Marijuana Prohibition—America’s Most Tragically Failed Social Policy Since Slavery—20-million Arrested, Countless Lives Destroyed

Which American political leader has the guts and foresight to become “the William Wilberforce” of the great campaign to end marijuana prohibition?? Your place in history is waiting.

By George Rohrbacher, NORML Board Member, medical marijuana patient
The inauguration of President Barack Obama is a historic event; both personal conversations and world media coverage are pregnant with its significance. That our new president came to Congress representing Illinois, the Land of Lincoln, is a sweet and wonderful irony. Abraham Lincoln came up from obscurity and poverty by the full employment of his wits and ambition. Revered throughout the world, Lincoln personified America is at its core, America is at its best; a meritocracy passionate about the welfare of its people.
The world has heard the term “historic” applied to the Obama Inauguration so often over these last few months, it is easy to lose sight just what “historic” means in this case: 150 years ago this half-black man would not been feted in Washington DC and sworn in to occupy the most important job on planet Earth; but no, Barack Obama could have been bought and sold like cattle just six miles down the road in Alexandria, Virginia. For more than the first 200 years of America’s history, slavery was defended from both the pulpit and the state house. The South saw the Emancipation Proclamation as “fiendish”, a “triumph of fanaticism.” Lincoln saw it as “the one thing that will make people remember I ever lived.”
An Englishman blazed the long torturous path that ran through Abraham Lincoln on to the end of slavery in America. William Wilberforce, as a Member of Parliament, devoted his life, his entire political career and personal fortune to righting one awful wrong: to ending slavery and the abominable slave trade. Wilberforce started his anti-slavery campaign in 1789 with a 4-hour speech to introduce the very first bill ever heard in Parliament that would outlaw the hugely profitable slave trade. This speech is still revered today, 220 years later.
Wilberforce’s slave trade bill did not pass that year, nor the next…nor the next. For 18 years, he continued to re-introduce bills to abolish the vile slave trade before final passage came in 1807. This was humanity’s first real step toward ending slavery, an evil “social institution” that has been with man since the dawn of recorded history. Wilberforce’s revolutionary change in English law threw the full weight of the British Navy against the slave trade on the high seas, and, for perhaps the first time in human political history, social and ethical issues out-ranked economic ones. The British Government eventually paid 20-million pounds sterling to free slaves on British soil. America, instead, paid in blood during the Civil War for its nearly 3,000,000 slaves, whose value, in 1850 dollars, stood at $1.2 billion.
Before the War, an inflamed Georgia State Legislature went so far as to offer a $5,000 reward to any bounty hunter willing to bring a Boston anti-slavery agitator back to trial in Georgia. Imagine the full power of legitimate government in America behind something as wrong as that—you have just imagined marijuana prohibition.
Looking backward, we know unequivocally today that Wilberforce and Lincoln were on the right side of history. Looking forward, we know just as surely marijuana legalization is on the right side of history, as well—and NORML has the facts to prove it. If President Obama would appoint one, a Shafer Commission 2.0 would make that very clear to all the rest of America.
“Drug prohibition is America’s most tragically failed social policy since slavery,” was an observation made by my fellow NORML board member, Jeffery Steinborn, a Yale-educated lawyer who has practiced criminal defense law for over 40-years in Seattle. The insight Jeff shared with me, he said, had originated with Norm Stamper, former Seattle Chief of Police and former Assistant Chief of Police of San Diego. Ever since then, I’ve been wrestling with the pull of Norm’s awful truth. To call slavery a “social policy” is thoroughly correct in this context—yes, America had the choice as a society whether, or not, to allow slavery, just like today we have the choice to end marijuana prohibition. Economic interests of the slaveholders trumped the ideals that founded our country, just as today entrenched interests against marijuana legalization continue to trash those very same founding ideals (try on “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”, for starters).
The degradation of our freedoms, the corruption of our police and legal system and the open disregard of law by the general public are a few of the institutional costs of this prohibition. The human costs, the personal costs to the 20-million Americans who have been arrested on marijuana charges, those costs are so high they are near impossible to calculate. Adding to that carnage, America’s patients, denied safe access to medical marijuana, pay the cost in pain and suffering that could be relieved by, “marijuana, the safest therapeutically active substance known to man”. 17,000 scientific studies have been published on the effects of this ancient herb and the human body’s endocannabinoid systems that respond to it. Science falls on deaf ears when it comes to our Congressional “don’t try to confuse me with the facts” marijuana prohibitionists.
All branches of government, state and federal, are in a world of budgetary hurt in the opening days of the Obama Administration; and, this problem is going to get dramatically worse in the coming years. County, city and state governments have reported huge declines in revenues in the fourth quarter of 2008. Sales taxes collections were down 6.5%, corporate income taxes have fallen 22%, and even formerly recession-proof lottery ticket sales are down, from more than 4% in Texas, to down 10% in California. Unlike the federal government who can just grease the presses at Treasury and start printing money, many state governments have a balanced budget as a requirement of their state constitutions. Revenues and expenses have to balance; they must either raise revenues or cut programs—it is just that simple. All 50 states are engaged in a ‘ten-alarm budget fire drill’ at this very moment. Every single fee, tax and expenditure is being re-examined. An example: ten states are currently eyeing a hike in the alcohol sales tax, something that will spread nationwide as the municipal budget disaster deepens. How much longer can American government ignore the $35-billion tax revenue gusher of marijuana legalization?
What kind of a message do we send to our children when we close their libraries and parks due to lack of tax revenue?
Are we too stupid to collect taxes on America’s multi-billion dollar marijuana business?? Our government has listed marijuana as one America’s most valuable agricultural crops every year for over the last quarter of a century—as marijuana will be again, next year. So, when is America going to WAKE UP AND TAX IT!!!??

Marijuana re-legalization must come from Congress, before our states can properly do their job. Otherwise, we get the crazy-quilt of regulations we have today with 13 states and their ‘quasi-legal’ medical marijuana.
While at the same time as creating new tax revenue for state and local governments, marijuana legalization would strike a huge blow for FREEDOM and LIBERTY in America and would significantly reduce CRIME:

*By ending marijuana prohibition, not only would we create new tax revenue streams, but our communities would be able to redirect the $10-15 billion dollars of criminal justice resources annually wasted chasing, arresting and jailing marijuana users and re-dedicate those precious dollars to finding lost children, tracking sex offenders or to catching and convicting rapists and murderers.
*The re-legalization of marijuana in America would prevent the arrest of at least 900,000 people next year from their adding to the more than 20-million already arrested for pot since 1965.
*The re-legalization of cannabis would also allow America’s farmers to grow industrial hemp so that Detroit’s bail-out cars could be produced with domestically grown hemp fibers in their door panels, not foreign-grown, and that goes double for all the hemp in the hundreds of beauty and health food products that line the shelves of our nation’s stores.

It will take great leadership in Congress to put us on the right course and make marijuana legal in America, again. But, the American People are already way out ahead of most politicians on this issue, just take look at the landslide marijuana votes in Massachusetts and Michigan this past November! So—who will be the “William Wilberforce” of the great campaign to end marijuana prohibition?? Which political leader has the guts and foresight to step forward and say: “It’s time to tap a North Slope-sized tax revenue gusher, because it’s time to let the American people and their marijuana go free!”??
Abe Lincoln once said, “Slavery is like having a wolf by the ears, you’re afraid to let it go, and you’re afraid not to.” Today drug prohibition is like having a pitbull by the ears, you’re afraid to let it go, and afraid not to. But ending marijuana prohibition, more than half of all drug arrests, is a very easy thing to do. To re-legalize marijuana all it takes is a simple majority in both House and Senate, and the signature of President Obama… It’s time for a Change!

The parallels between two American social institutions, marijuana prohibition and slavery, are many: 1.) millions and millions of people end up in bondage; 2.) once in the system, you are a marked for life; 3.) a Draconian police state is required to fully enforce laws of either kind; 4.) in bondage, one loses a citizen’s inalienable rights; 5.) both social institutions, slavery and marijuana prohibition, are thoroughly racist from their inception to their operation; 6.) both the slave trade and the marijuana trade create vast profits for the wrong elements in society; 7.) both social institutions deeply divide and scar America, and pray primarily on people of color, breaking their families apart; 8.) neighboring countries involved with the “trade” become destabilized; 9.) the proponents of slavery and marijuana prohibition attract the lovers of incarceration and coercion, who, while defending their flawed and inhumane views from the pulpit and the state house, vigorously resist any re-examination of their “facts” or reasoning; and 10.) both have disastrous long term outcomes for America.

*Vested economic interests who prosper under marijuana prohibition
*Governments overlooking Billions in untapped taxes–
There is sitting silently, a waiting tax gusher, a North Slope-sized gusher of tax revenue just waiting, with at least $35 billion annually begging to be collected. America could start that flow of tax revenue next month—all we have to do is just legalize cannabis!
*The Face of Modern American slavery?
Baltimore, Maryland–60% of the black males aged 18-35 are either incarcerated, under indictment or on parole. (Wall St. Journal)

People of color are arrested and incarcerated for marijuana at rates hugely disproportionate to those of whites. NORML has updated the world-famous anti-slavery medallion produced in 1787 by Josiah Wedgwood.
This medallion was the primary visual symbol of the first successful movement working to end slavery in the world. This image was about as famous, in the 18th and 19th centuries, as the peace symbol is today. Wedgwood produced 20,000 of these anti-slavery medallions. In the campaign to change public opinion on slavery, the image became a touchstone.
The slave trade was finally ended in England in 1807. NOTE: Josiah Wedgwood’s daughter, Susannah, was Charles Darwin’s mother. Born 200 years ago and on the very same day as Abraham Lincoln, Charles Darwin’s hatred of slavery shaped his views on human evolution.

Harry J. Anslinger is the person most responsible for the arrest of 20-million people in America on marijuana charges. The first Drug Czar (1930-1962) used racial slurs and manufactured news stories to make marijuana illegal in an unsuspecting United States. Anslinger next used America’s political and economic power in the UN and in international treaties to spread the virus of marijuana prohibition around the globe like the AIDS. President Obama’s half-brother, George, just arrested for marijuana possession in Kenya, has Harry Anslinger, the Great Enslaver, to thank for his manacles.

0 thoughts

  1. legalize it, tax it save our economy and stop the raids and arrests, take it out of the dealers hands and out of the hands of the children.

  2. The day I walk with my Brothers N sisters and this great herbs legalized I will be freed, We must stand Up , and stand strong as we have, I feel an awakening and we are a force to be reckon with…My brothers and Sisters Keep pushing b ecause the day its legalized I wanna SMoke one with you …..MUCH LOVE
    ANdrew L.

  3. Cannabis has always been an easy scapegoat when the word drugs is used in that context to make the correlation. Especially the word marijuana, as its origins and beginnings are from the prohibitionists and moralists of that era using racial overtones to stigmatize and label the Mexican workers and that has carried over today. When someone is arrested with cannabis they are charged with a marijuana crime, guilty by word association. The word marijuana has connotations from that past propaganda.
    It is like when one is arrested and the mugshot is always taken to show the suspect dirty, greasy, and disheveled because it equals guilt unless you are Lindsay or Paris who always look good in their mugshot when they had trouble consuming alcohol.
    Cannabis users are the most discriminated group in the country.All the laws against cannabis are derived from these racial agendas.
    I recently had a conversation with Irv Rosenfeld,www.potluckrx.com, one of the four federally legal patients for medical cannabis, and we have both concurred and agreed not use the word marijuana because of the words origins and hopefully you will agree as well not to use the word marijuana instead we will be using the word cannabis.
    By using the word marijuana we are feeding and giving those negative racist discrimination’s and energies credibility.
    By using the word Cannabis we are using positivity, God and science.
    In fact I am recommending and requesting that NORML lose the word Marijuana from its’ title and substitute with Cannabis as it would be a wonderful start to change and turn this negativity around.
    The National Organization for the Reform of Cannabis Laws. NORCL !
    “The War on Drugs was never, ever about drugs, it’s about bigotry. You can change the law, but changing the prejudice and fear of bigots who hide behind drug war rhetoric is a far more challenging task. It’s time to expose the Drug War and the bigots who promote the ideology of “Zero Tolerance.””
    Steve Kubby
    http://www.kubby.com/

  4. Great article. I hope something happens soon because i’m an underground pot smoker who must hide in the shadows of society afraid of being labeled a criminal which i am not. I work sometimes 6 days a week have a family and mortgage. Everytime I go to resupply I always wonder if today i get pulled over and go to jail, what will happen to my family? It’s complete utter B.S. If anything should be illegal it should be alcohol. Now i too like to enjoy a nice cold glass of Guiness maybe more but i’ve seen people completely ruin their lives from excess drinking that it’s completely disgusting. Please lets Legalize it for the better. Legalize-Tax it-Stimulate economy!

  5. I do support the cause, especially being part of the 20 million. The only this is Obama has been on the record talking for decrimilization, but not legalization. Although decrimilization is a step in the right direction, we are still very far from legalization.

  6. Thanks, George, for an impassioned essay. However, is the $35 billion tax estimate based on prices for cannabis in a legal world or is that based on current black market rates? Does it include the vast commercial potential of legal hemp farming?
    There may be no way to know for sure what the economic fallout will be until the plant is legalized and all of its uses come into play. I expect that the price of recreational and medical cannabis will drop dramatically because the plant is so much easier to grow than tobacco. There will no doubt be premium strains, like fine wine, that will fetch a higher price, but still much less than the current outrageous rates. Good pot should cost no more than good tobacco, taxes included.
    However, the $35 billion in tax revenues may actually end up being conservative once the myriad of other cannabis-based products come to the marketplace. It’s a potential so vast that I’m not sure we can even imagine now how much fully legalized cannabis will affect the economy.

  7. That’s exactly why we have a ‘war on (some) drugs.’ In grade school I learned about how after the north won the civil war, racist politicians wrote ‘grandfather clauses’ (google it) and when those were found unconstitutional they were ‘triumphantly’ struck down ‘so the negro could finally vote.’ Then we started the ‘war on (some) drugs’ to outlaw all the naturally growing substances that minorities used instead of drinking the white man’s alcohol.
    There is no doubt in my mind these drugs played major roles in our own evolution; all these drugs (minus meth, of course) grow naturally on this planet with no help from man (although nurturing them does improve the results) yet when ingested cause some very deep philosophical thoughts. And that’s why they’re outlawed, the government doesn’t want you thinking; they want you drinking; alcohol is the result of fruits ‘fermenting,’ that is: rotting. Alcohol is poison; you don’t have to reach ‘alcohol *poisoning* to know that. It’s still poison. (So are psychedelic mushrooms.) But not cannabis. “Safest therapeutic substance” etc etc etc by the Lancet or the former surgeon general, etc.

  8. Allen,
    This is a great piece, I hope that each and every member of our congress reads it, and especially our new president. I can feel the scales tipping in the right direction!

  9. Great! But invoking the name of Harry Anslinger at the end is unnecessary. Of course I am not talking about denying his impact, clearly he is the one figure most at fault for the madness. But one paragraph is faaaaaar too short to really put his crimes of humanity in context. If not being approached appropriately, it should be left out. Other than that:
    TOTALLY AWESOME!!!
    Great article! I will repost!

  10. This war will not end until there is blood in the streets from our anger. I do not say this lightly as I have seen more blood than I ever want to see again. I say this because it is how things are in the world. We are in the many positions we are in right now because we have allowed ourselves to be perceived as weak by authority figures. We are broken fiscally because we have allowed others to cook our national books without our insistence upon oversight. We have allowed ourselves to make war our main industry without protest. Indeed, this one required our active participation to man the ranks. We have allowed our country to stand for evil because we have done nothing but talk. I hate war, but it is coming. I feel it’s bony fingers making it’s way to our streets. Our government will choose to further the police state mentality in order to maintain order amidst the depression-era riots that will come. There will be no relief from government. That can only come from the one place it ever could have come from at any time. The people. Unfortunately, marijuana is illegal and persecuted because we are a weak citizenry. It is our desire to avoid blood that is going to create more blood in our streets than any of us ever dreamed possible. I only pray I am wrong. Yet, a strong and willful people would have laughed these laws out of existence before they were even codified. Only the weak nature of we, the sheep, have kept this war alive. That is all. We deserve no better because we did no better. And we did no better because we were, and still are, afraid. Shame on us all.

  11. “I will say, then, that I AM NOT NOR HAVE EVER BEEN in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the black and white races—that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters
    or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with White people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the White and black races which will ever FORBID the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together, there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the White race.”
    — 4th Lincoln-Douglas debate, September 18th, 1858; COLLECTED WORKS Vol. 3, pp. 145-146
    Lincoln’s expansion of the powers of the federal government and annihilation of stats’ rights are a huge reason that the federal government had the power to make weed illegal in the first place.

  12. Come on Obama…wake up an’ smell that sweet bud…sniff, can’t ya smell that smell???…All ya have to do to stop this war on pot is flip the pro-marijuana lever…I can hear the Fat Lady about to burst out in all her glory in celebration!!!
    Puff…Puff…

  13. TERRORISTS ARE DIRECTLY FUNDED AND GANG VIOLENCE PERPETUATED DUE LARGELY TO THE CURRENT LEGAL STATUS OF CANNABIS AND OTHER SUBSTANCES, THE PERSONAL, PRIVATE AND RESPONSIBLE (DOES NOT INFRINGE ON THE FREEDOM AND LIBERTIES OF OTHERS) CONSUMPTION OF WHICH, IS NOBODY ELSE’S DAMN BUSINESS. I TAKE FULL RESPONSABILITY FOR AND AM FULLY ACCOUNTABLE FOR THE USE OR NON-USE OF ANY DRUG(S) I FREELY CHOOSE TO, OR NOT TO, USE AND OR ABUSE. MY GOD IS THE ULTIMATE AUTHORITY OF MY RIGHT TO LIVE FREE. THE ISSUE HERE IS AS PROFOUND AS LIBERTY AND FREEDOM, AND AS SIMPLE AS KEEPING ONE’S NOSE OUT OF OTHER PEOPLE’S BUSINESS.

  14. If everyone would please call and flood President Barack Obama’s own message line at 202-456-1111 or 202-456-1414 and tell him we want him to REPEAL our Federal marijuana/hemp laws now, every day until our Federal Gov. Repeals all marijuana/hemp laws, then “We the people’s voices will be finally heard loud and clear! Copy this and pass it along! MAKE A DIFFERENCE! CALL

  15. I was arrested in 2007 by the Hunt Team (undercover unit) in Michigan for growing cannibus in my vegitable garden behind my house in the North Woods (stupid,yes).I didn’t think anything of it. I was earning 60k a year helping others less fortunate than me, and damn good at it. Since that surreal day in August of 2007, my life has been a nightmare. I lost my job along with health insuance, wemt to jail for two months, spent 10k on a lawyer, 3.5k on fines and court costs, and I am now fighting to keep my home from forfiture (I owe only 12k on it after 20 years). The judge has decided to take my home. The police testified that they did not think that I was distrubuting -because I wasn’t and didn’t need to and they had never heard of me from any drug people, because I had a clean record! Court was like going to a dog fight with a squirrel. Anyway, I….shit !!!

  16. When we hear our leaders say, “Marijuana will ruin your life” we must remember it’s not Marijuana that ruins lives it’s the laws and brainwashed society against Marijuana that destroy lives. When we hear our leaders say Marijuana will keep you from reaching your dreams we must remember it’s not Marijuana that ruins our dream it’s the laws and brainwashed society against Marijuana that destroy or damage our dreams. Marijuana has its risks but so does everything else we use or consume that is 100% legal.
    Did Marijuana damage Ricky Williams or Michael Phelps? No it was the laws that harmed their career. I could go on and on with a list of names… Sad thing is many of our leaders have smoked but are pussies to do what is right and legalize Marijuana

  17. YES WE CAN–tell Mr. President we believe- and its the only way we get out of this rough economy- grow it-make products, create jobs, and export it—UGHHHHHH- that is A WINNER

  18. YES WE CAN(NABIS) – YES WE CAN-make lives better-create jobs and export- also make music and new entertainment-translation-a new revolution- a thriving economy- challenge yourselves to a new way to redefine a world full of unjustice Mr. Senator, Mr. Mayor, Mr. President.

  19. #12 Phil E. Drifter Says:
    February 11th, 2009 at 5:00 pm
    [….] Alcohol is poison; you don’t have to reach ‘alcohol *poisoning* to know that. It’s still poison.
    (So are psychedelic mushrooms.)
    But not cannabis. “Safest therapeutic substance” etc etc etc by the Lancet or the former surgeon general, etc.
    \/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\
    RE:
    Phil E. Drifter,
    — I COMPLETELY AGREE that ALCOHOL is a POISON.
    It EASILY causes loss of control, and memory ‘blackouts’;
    Especially from consuming its concentrated, distilled form.
    — HOWEVER, concerning psychedelic mushrooms,
    I STRONGLY DISAGREE that these are also a poison.
    — Their ‘lethality’ is closer to that of
    cannabis in their LOW TOXICITY,
    (Assuming that you’re speaking of the Psilocybin-genus of mushrooms, and not Amanita Muscaria, which ARE quite toxic).
    — Not to say that psilocybins are completely harmless,
    (Nothing is).
    — One must be very mindful of their state-of-mind,
    set & setting when consuming P.C. mushrooms, and
    of their greater intensity, perceptual-effects than cannabis.
    — However, they’re not a ‘poison’ in the same sense that alcohol is.
    SEE:
    http://www.shroomery.org/6297/Psilocybe-Toxicity-Information
    and also
    http://www.erowid.org/chemicals/psilocybin/psilocybin_dose.shtml
    — The compounds, (‘tryptamines’), in P.C. mushrooms are
    closely related / very similar to those
    which are NORMALLY MADE by the brain’s pineal gland during the REM sleep-phase,
    (and are also theorized to be involved in / responsible for vivid dreaming during this stage of sleep).
    SEE:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melatonin#Dreaming
    AND ALSO READ:
    the chapter titled,
    “Dreams Like You Never Dreamed!”
    from,
    “Melatonin, Nature’s Sleeping Pill”,
    by
    Dr. Ray Sahelian, M.D.
    …wherever you can still find this book title.
    —And though Psilocybin has stronger perceptual-enhancement properties and ‘time-slowing / time-dilation’ effects than cannabis,
    the LD50 for Psilocybin are quite high,
    (Meaning that a VERY LARGE DOSE is required
    to achieve ‘toxicity’ / ‘lethality’, as is also true for Cannabis;
    “Safest therapeutic substance” etc etc etc by the Lancet or the former surgeon general, etcetera).
    Wikipedia Article -> 13-Feb-2009:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Melatonin#Dreaming
    Dreaming
    — Many supplemental melatonin users have reported an increase in vivid dreaming.
    — Extremely high doses of melatonin (50 mg) dramatically increased REM sleep time and dream activity in both narcoleptics and those without narcolepsy. [39]
    — However, one factor that may influence this perception is that many over-the-counter melatonin tablets also include Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), which is also known to be capable of producing vivid dreams.[citation needed]
    — Many psychoactive drugs, such as marijuana and LSD,
    INCREASE MELATONIN SYNTHESIS.[39]
    — It has been suggested that nonpolar, (lipid-soluble), indolic hallucinogenic drugs emulate melatonin activity in the awakened state and that both act on the same areas of the brain.[39]
    — It has been suggested that psychotropic drugs be readmitted in the field of scientific inquiry and therapy.[40]
    If so, melatonin may be prioritized for research in this reemerging field of psychiatry.[41]

  20. i think decrimilization is the way to go so government can let us do what everyone needs at the end of the day to cope with our problems in a civalized way and relax. and to be put on probation it is a way for the police to take away your natural right to enjoy youself because thats all it really is. Obama will handle this issue when the time is right but just have faith yall

  21. As a recent addition to the roles of the incarcerated for “Canabis” Possession I have to agree. If this is not the DUMBEST law on the books, I’d like to know what is! It’s such a no-brainer: You save money on enforcement, Juristiction,incarceration,and parole expense; AND you earn money in taxes!!!! It’s a no-lose situation. Now that we need more spending it’s the perfect time to legalize it!!! A high shopper usually spends more if my personal observations are right; and I think they are.

  22. #33 ShaneBurt Says:
    February 14th, 2009 at 1:06 am
    i think decrimilization is the way to go…..
    —–
    RE:
    ShaneBurt,
    Decrimilization is the NOT way to go!
    re-LEGALIZATION is!!! 🙂
    –‘DECRIM’ is a VAGUE, ‘D’-ceiving word!!!
    — If something’s ONLY ‘decriminalized’, it’s usually
    STILL ILLEGAL, just not as strongly illegal…
    — DECRIM is a ‘half-ashed’ measure,
    and the worst of both worlds! 🙁
    SEE:
    http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v01.n276.a05.html
    “LEGALIZATION, as OPPOSED to DECRIMINALIZATION, would create a LEGAL, REGULATED market for marijuana, presumably with AGE LIMITS and QUALITY-CONTROLS similar to those placed on alcohol.”
    (Note: CAP-LOCKS word-EMPHASIS in
    MAPINC-article is for CLARITY).

  23. So, President Obama, are you keeping track of this? Are you paying attention to what your citizens are saying? I hope so. I’m really looking forward to sitting on my front porch, on my organic farm, sampling the best of what I could be offering to the public. I’m willing to pay fair taxes on it – I’d have to pay taxes on my other cash crops, and my property, wouldn’t I?
    I’d really like to have that farm before I’m 60. Could you get a move on, please? I’m in my early 30’s now.
    Thank you.
    Lianan
    Homeowner, taxpayer, and occasional smoker.

  24. This goverment really have their heads up their butts!!! Can’t they see this is not working,they need to re-legalize Cannabis and stop filling our jails with Cannabis smokers.
    We need to flood Congress with letters,emails,snail mail,what ever it takes. This can only be changed in Congress and we need it changed right NOW!!!

  25. I HAVE LIVED IN PAIN FOR OVER 20 YEARS. I AM 42 YRS OLD. NOT YOUNG! THE PAIN I SUFFER EVERYDAY,I PREY SOMEONE WOULD PUT A PILLOW OVER MY FACE OR A SILVER BULLET IN MY TEMPLE.OR JUST PLAIN OLD OVERDOSE ME WITH THE 20 OR SO PILLS A DAY I TAKE. WHEN I LIVED IN HAWAII AND MY DR. WAS FOR IT AND IT WAS AVAILABLE FROM PEOPLE I KNEW. I DIDNT KNOW I HAD HALF THE HEALTH PROBLEMS I HAD. I COME TO MINNESOTA 5 YRS AGO, GET MARRIED TO A WOMAN THAT THOUGHT I HAD LOTS OF MONEY AND DIDNT WANT POT SMOKING AROUND HER,BECAUSE OF SO CALLED LEGAL REASONS. SO I WENT BY HER RULES. WHEN AFTER WE MARRIED & SHE WAS LOOKING TO FIND OUT ABOUT MY MONEY STATUS, I TOLD HER AS LONG AS THE BILLS ARE PAID,DONT WORRY. THAT WAS BECAUSE OF THE SMOKING POT ISSUE AND HER OUT GETTING DRUNK & COMING HOME SMELLING LIKE A CONDOM BAG. I SUFFERED FOR 6 MONTHS. THEN I FOUND A MEXICAN MAN WHO WAS KINDA TO ME THAN ANY OF HER PREDJUDICE FAMILY THAT DIDNT LIKE NY YORKERS AND ITALIANS. SO I WOULD FIND SOME EVERY FEW MONTHS AND THE PAIN WENT FROM A 20 DOWN TO A 6-8 ON THE PAIN SCALE OF 1-10 AND 10 BEING THE HIGHEST. SHE DIED A YEAR LATER AFTER STEALING MY MEDS AND OVERDOSING. AND EVENTHO I HAVE 4-8 MORE DAYS IN A MONTH OF MEDS. I AM STILL IN HORRIBLE PAIN.FROM NEUROPATHY, TO HERNIATED DISC, TO BONE SPURS ON MY HEELS AND THE TOP OF MY SPINE PUSHING ON MY TOP NERVE ROOT CANAL.OTHER DISC FROM MY BACK DOING THE SAFE. ALSO NO CARTLIDGE IN MY KNEES,DEGENERITIVE BONE DISEASES. YOU NAME IT I GOT IT. I WENT TO SAN FRAN LAST SEPT. FOR 5 DAYS IN THE COUNTY HOSPITAL FOR A MEDICAL MARIJUANA STUDY. I TELL YOU I WAS IN MEBTAL & PHYSICAL BLISS UNTIL I GOT BACK TO MN. I WAS ONLY TAKEING 1/2 MY MEDS WHEN I WAS IN THE HOSPITAL. WHEN I USE TO JUST SMOKE FOR THE NICE HIGH I GOT. I WASNT INTO DRINKING BOOZE AND GETTING SICK. I NEVER THOUGHT POT GOT RID OF PAIN. I GUESS THATS WHY I DIDNT BELIEVE BECAUSE I HAD IT IN MY SYSTEM. NOW I DON’T AND MY LIFE IS A HELL ,EVERY WAKING MOMENT. SO PLEASE WRITE YOUR GOVERNORS, YOUR SENORTORS AND CONGRESSMAN. WANT EVER IT TAKES. IT WILL SAVE THE GOV. OVER $400 A MONTH ON ME ALONG FOR MEDS I HAVE TO USE AT THIS TIME OF MY LIFE. THANK YOU AND MAY YOU BE SAFE AND PAIN FREE.

  26. So you know what we you need to do? Yes, no matter what your age, if you haven’ t yet done so, you need to start your own business or ministry. But first, you need to find your calling ; then learn how to transform it into a business or a ministry. First read my book , which will help you to find your calling and get you in the mentality for Christian entrepreneurship.

  27. CONTACT YOUR CONGRESS AND SAY: Its Time for Common sense!Gov. Gary Johnson, a Republican, has sent to the state legislature a bill that would decriminalize marijuana.S.F. Sheriff: Decriminalize Marijuana Now.Assemblyman Tom Ammiano is to introduce legislation that would legalize — and tax — marijuana., at Northwestern University shows Obama proclaiming the war on drugs an “utter failure.” “We need to rethink and decriminalize our marijuana laws.I think we should.I would say the age of 21. Just Like Booze. I dont Use Booze or Pot .And a Person can Just say Yes or No. We as Americans with Freedom should have a Choice. There are 2,000,000 People In Jail or Prison costing over $40,000 each per year who could be set Free. There are People who were Busted with One Joint Many Years Ago who cant get a good Job because of a Feloney Drug/Pot Charges.Expungement of Felony Charges Is Just More Blood Sucking From the Attorneys.Carpetbagger Attorneys have High academic skills but Little or No Common sense . Milton Friedman leads a list of more than 500 economists from around the U.S. who today will publicly endorse a Harvard University economist’s report on the costs of marijuana prohibition and the potential revenue gains from the U.S. government legalizing it and taxing its sale. Ending prohibition enforcement would save $7.7 billion in combined state and federal spending, the report says, while taxation would yield $6.2 billion or more a year.
    Colorado — A group calling for the legalization and regulation of marijuana says taking that step could give a boost to Colorado’s economy.
    Sensible Colorado is relying on statistics from Jeffrey Miron, a visiting professor of economics at Harvard University. Miron says taxing and regulating marijuana in the same fashion as alcohol would yield savings and tax revenue between $10 billion and $14 billion a year nationally, and about $81.6 million annually in Colorado.
    Miron’s expertise is in the economic impact of legalizing drugs.
    “Taxing and regulating marijuana is the right choice for Colorado,” Brian Vicente, the director of Sensible Colorado, said in a statement.
    Miron estimates that regulating marijuana would save Colorado about $64 million from not having to enforce the prohibition against the drug, while taxation would bring in about $17.6 million in new revenue.
    American City Business Journals Inc.
    http://denver.bizjournals.com/denver/stories/2005/05/30/daily29.html?jst=b_ln_hl
    . new resident from the same police dog gene pool that serviced … just introduced the nation’s first bill to tax and regulate pot like alcohol! …. I do believe marijuana prohibition will end one day. … It would even be nice to see an outline of NORML’s goals in this endeavor. …
    blog.norml.org/2009/03/01/is-marijuana-prohibition-americas-berlin-wall/ .I Say Yes to Legal Marijuana.Stop Funding Black Market Drug Money

  28. Failed Policy SINCE Slavery? Read the 13th amendment you moron. It’s the #1 REASON FOR Slavery. Slavery was never abolished. Instead of just blacks now, ANYONE can be a Slave if you use an “Illicit” Substance. 13th: Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

  29. IF you want to See a huge HUGE shift in America toward the better, have them change the wording of the 13th amendment. Simplified 13th Amendment “Slavery is Illegal” Then all the non-violent drug offenders in prison wont be forced to work for pennies on the dollar to keep their slave masters profitable.

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