Pubdate: Tue, 13 Apr 2010
Source: Oklahoma Daily, The (U of Oklahoma, OK Edu)
Copyright: 2010 The Oklahoma Daily
Author: Robert Sharpe
Note: Title by MAP


Dear Editor,

Regarding Jess Eddy's April 9th column, if health outcomes determined
drug laws instead of cultural norms, marijuana would be legal. Unlike
alcohol, marijuana has never been shown to cause an overdose death,
nor does it share the addictive properties of tobacco. Like any drug,
marijuana can be harmful if abused, but jail cells are inappropriate
as health interventions and ineffective as deterrents.

The first marijuana laws were enacted in response to Mexican
immigration during the early 1900s, despite opposition from the
American Medical Association. Dire warnings that marijuana inspires
homicidal rages have been counterproductive at best. White Americans
did not even begin to smoke pot until a soon-to-be entrenched federal
bureaucracy began funding reefer madness propaganda.

Marijuana prohibition has failed miserably as a deterrent. The U.S.
has higher rates of marijuana use than the Netherlands, where
marijuana is legally available to adults over 18. Students who want to
help end the intergenerational culture war otherwise known as the war
on some drugs should contact Students for Sensible Drug Policy at

Please feel free to edit and publish. Thank you for your

United Nations drug stats:

Comparative analysis of U.S. vs. Dutch rates of drug

The following Virginia Law Review article provides a good overview of
the cultural roots of marijuana legislation:


Robert Sharpe, MPA

Policy Analyst

Common Sense for Drug Policy
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MAP posted-by: Richard Lake