My recent debate with Cumberland County District Attorney David Freed at Dickinson College on September 4 in now online for viewing.
But the drug czar probably assumed that it’s a freebie to call people with criminal convictions anything he wants, because they’re likely to be too ashamed to defend themselves. That’s certainly true, but it didn’t take me long to find credible people willing to vouch for the existence of first-time, non-violent marijuana offenders—excuse me, unicorns.
I’m pleased to see that the political left is finally beginning to emphasize the tragedy that is marijuana prohibition. Truth is: it is impossible in this day and age to talk about social justice, civil liberties, and economic equality without calling for an end to the “war on (some) drugs.”
Without sounding overly jaded, it will not surprise many that a principle root of the problem here is ‘money’. In fact, our tax money.
Washington DC’s Roll Call newspaper had an article last week (10/15/08, pg 9, under the very aptly entitled ‘Vested Interests’ section) that highlights one of the major sources for cannabis arrests in the United States, and how it’s possible demise in future might have positive effects for cannabis consumers in the coming years.
The Hill is providing reformers with a valuable service by bringing our message prominently to Capitol Hill, and acting as a mediator in a high profile debate with the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.
Voters in Massachusetts will decide this November on Question 2, which seeks to replace criminal penalties for the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana with a civil fine of no more than $100. Polls show that nearly three-out-of-four voters back the measure.
Now, proponents of prohibition and the status quo may view the above example (which typifies a daily news feed re ‘cannabis’, ‘marijuana’ and ‘hemp’) as examples of successes in the government’s war against some drugs. But, however, one can also be tasked to empty an ocean with a spoon…
The Czar’s nose grew another six inches when he uncorked this whopper: “The fact is today, people don’t go to jail for the possession of marijuana. Finding somebody in jail or prison for possession of marijuana is like finding a unicorn. It doesn’t exist.”