Is Marijuana Prohibition America's 'Berlin Wall'?

By George Rohrbacher, NORML Board of Directors, medical marijuana patient.
The Rohrbachers, farming family feeding America since 1972.
It is said that almost everyone in the marijuana law reform movement has a seminal moment they can point to when their public activism started. My moment was in the fall, six years ago.
I’m a past president of our local Kiwanis Club. I’ve been a member for years; we meet for breakfast at 6:30am, every Wednesday morning. My fateful “activism moment” was meeting face-to-face with one morning’s Kiwanis Club program, our town’s newly acquired dope dog. Some rock-ribbed citizen had left money in his will for the city to buy a dope dog for our town of 3,000, in a county of 18,000 people. The dog’s handler and the police chief were up at the speaker’s table. I had to fight back the urge to turn around and run.
As I sat down at my usual spot, ordered breakfast and clipped on my Kiwanis Club nametag, my heart was just racing! Thank God, my neck pain had not been severe enough that morning that it had required some marijuana medication, because, I imagined, triggered by the smell of freshly consumed ganja, that huge German Shepard would have leaped from the podium to pin me down to the floor, the dog’s sharp white teeth snarling and snapping at my throat.
As we went through club business about our kid’s reading program, ate breakfast and conducted the normal chit-chat that makes Kiwanis Club so enjoyable, I slowly calmed myself. I had not been found out as a marijuana user, yet. There was no need for me to panic, because the likelihood that I would be found out now by this agent of the state, was growing smaller and smaller by the moment. But, as the primal fear drained away, it started to piss me off; this dope dog was invading my space.
The dog handler got up and spoke glowingly about his charge, the alpha male of his litter. This dog had been born of a long and impressive pedigree in Baden-something, formerly East Germany. Looking at me from across the room was the pride of the jack-booted police state, the purebred German Shepard—smart, vicious, relentless.
The dog handler went chirping on, to mostly nodding heads, about what a fantastic dog he had and how many pot busts he had already made with it. Suddenly, all I could think was: This dog was born in East Germany, it’s father could have pulled someone down off the Berlin Wall…this dog’s great-grandfather would have marched the Jews or Gypsies to the ovens at Buchenwald or Auschwitz… And now, my own little town had a new resident from the same police dog gene pool that serviced the two most brutal totalitarian regimes in the history of the mankind!
Scenes from my childhood of when German Shepards attacked the Civil Rights marchers at Selma floated before my eyes… This well-groomed dog was a tool of the modern police state in all its scariest manifestations. The more I thought about it, the madder and madder I got.
I paid my breakfast bill and left in the first wave. I drove back out to the ranch and fed our cows their daily ration of hay, all the while mulling over my close brush with the dope dog. By the time I got done with my chores and back to the house, I absolutely had to do something! I picked up my telephone and called NORML, and I volunteered for the fight that very day…our fight for “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness…”
Marijuana prohibition is a corrupt and evil social institution, just like the Berlin Wall was. For generations both have been symbols of the ruthless and relentless oppression of the state. Then, one day, by the sheer weight of internal political rot and thousands of little hammers, the Berlin Wall came down, and it came down virtually overnight! Marijuana Prohibition is just as corrupt and evil as the Wall, and it, also, is rotting internally from seven decades of injustice. It, too, is ready for collapse.
Help NORML take down Marijuana Prohibition…throw down some cash, send out our warriors/winners of the NORML Pro-Pot Ad Campaign for a national cable advertising campaign for as little as $.08 per 30-second ad! Please help us roll public opinion past the tipping point to legalization. The time for us to strike is now! Marijuana issues are before two-dozen state legislatures, at this very moment, California just introduced the nation’s first bill to tax and regulate pot like alcohol! Cable ad pricing has never been better than it is at this moment. We’ve now got NORML’s awesome winning video ads…you’ve got a few bucks…let’s put ‘em together and cover America with NORML ads.
Get into the Fight! Help NORML kick electronic ass!
Examples of NORML cable TV buys:
-Cable Cannabis Blitz-

33,000, 30-second TV ads, broadcast 6AM-Midnight on cable packages during programming from ESPN, CNN, CNBC, Weather Channel, MSNBC, MTV, VH-1, BET, Animal Planet, E!, Bravo and 10 other major cable programmers for the cost of…$2,750…or approximately 8 cents/per ad! This ad package will reach an estimated 1.6 million households in 187 markets.

That is right! NORML can now purchase TV spots for only 8 cents.
-Women and Weed-

Approximately 1,500, 30-second TV ads, targeting women’s programming (Oxygen, Soap, Lifetime, Style, WE, etc…) for $1,200. This ad package will reach an estimated 27.5 million households in 90 major markets. What is the cost per ad in this package?

80 cents per TV ad!
-Men and Marijuana-

Approximately 2,600, 30-second TV ads, 27.5 million households targeting men’s programming (Comedy Central, ESPN, Speed, Versus, Sci-Fi, Golf Channel, etc…) for $4,900, which boils down to $1.88/per ad.

Get out your friggin’ wallets and purses people. Get in the fight and please help us!!! NOW!

0 thoughts

  1. I am giving up weed for a week to put the money toward this just cause. We are not criminals and marijuana is not a drug, it’s a plant. Stop arresting good citizens!

  2. NORML TODO:
    1. TV ad fundraiser chart with goals & milestones
    2. User poll on which ad to run
    3. Specific confirmation on exactly what ad+timeslot donated funds will go toward.
    Momentum is gathering…

  3. “I can’t believe that anyone could even BEGIN to put dope against the berlin wall!! Get real people!! The only similarity is that they screw(ed) lives up!
    The oppression of a people, shootings, totalitarianism, tyranny.. yeah, they’re the same as “Sorry dude, you cant light up here…”.. Wow.. some people..”:
    More like “Sorry sir. Since you gave marijuana to that kid with phantom limb pain, I’m going to have to put you in jail for life without parole.”
    Or how about:
    “Sorry sir, since you lit up your joint in your own house, I’m going to have to send you to jail for a couple of years. Now you can’t ever get a decent job.”
    Sad that you don’t understand that.
    “Please grow up and stop thinking this is some crusade…why not put your energies into sorting out poverty? or hunger? or racism? or (shock horror) pushing our politicians to bring war criminals to justice… I promise if you sorted these out, maybe the world wouldnt be such a thing you’d want to escape”
    Because this IS a crusade. If you had bothered to research marijuana’s history before coming here, you wouldn’t be so ignorant. The illegalization of marijuana started with racism, and has continued with uneducated, stereotypical statements about cannabis smokers to this day.
    It’s arrested millions of non-violent offenders. It’s stolen mothers and fathers from their families. No, I’m not talking about cannabis. I’m talking about the laws surrounding it.
    It’s not “you can’t smoke here.” It’s “Oh, you have marijuana? You deserve to be thrown in jail for three years.”
    Get it through your head. Do some research and THEN come back and say the same.

  4. Dear Anon?
    Oppression is what oppression is. There is a desire within every man to have the right to free will,
    and when that is denied there is a
    natural human reaction to resist. Marijiuana
    prohibition is a force only to encourage
    that natural desire to be “FREE”.
    During any tyranny, I.E. berlin wall, people
    were denied the right to cross. SO there is a correlation
    of sorts. You have to see it to believe it
    i guess. The “righteous” ones are always
    in tuned with the moral standards of the lowly
    i guess. I.E. All politicians. You cannot begin to
    see the injustice until your a part of it.
    And can empathize with it.

  5. “The time for us to strike is now! Marijuana issues are before two-dozen state legislatures, at this very moment, California just introduced the nation’s first bill to tax and regulate pot like alcohol!”
    I totally agree! I gave money with the easy paypal. I really think that wih enough mainstream support, California will be the first legal market. Any state or country that legalizes pot first/early will be able to create a thriving market for not only product, but also science (plant hordiculture and genetics), culture (clubs, and outlets, clothing, merchandise) and most importantly the status of being the source or origin of the movement! (Like Florida Oranges, Idaho Potatoes, Russian Vodka, Italian Cloths, Swiss watches, etc.,)
    Legalization means much HUGE for the economy than a few cannabis brands selling pot to the hippies, it is an entire economy (theme parks, travel, concerts, bars, clubs, travel, tourism, churches, etc.,)that create a huge opportunity for everyone to do business! In other words, a real stimulus package.
    People… we have an open minded and progressive President in office now, interested in solving the recession but also devoted to science. The climate is ripe! Now is the time to fire up for NORML.
    I really feel that legalized pot could save California. Business could explode there! Real estate would automatically get a boost because of safe haven migration for consumers but also industry. California could also solve bulging prisons by freeing all the non-violent marijuana offenders. And I think even the harshest drug warriors are at least considering what is is to be politically correct today about cannabis patients and consumers; the growing medical movement among states, as well as change.org and .gov things could tip over very easily!
    Imagine how stupid people dry states are going to look when all the lights are on in California, and people and society goes on just normal, but with a lot more business and happy people!

  6. (I know it’s off topic, but come-on moderator.)
    Dear vasilis and other haters,
    ANYONE (including the ONDCP) can invoke emotion by playing the neglectful, drug-addicted-parent card. Whats to stop these neglectful parents from buying crack or heroin OR ALCOHOL? ITS CHEAPER AND MORE EFFECTIVE AT GETTING YOU HIGH!! Stop being ridiculous. And please think before you post.. Especially in the epicenter of pro-marijuana talk.. Seriously. Marijuana prohibition screws up many peoples lives and although those of you who dislike ‘pot’ may disagree with our fervor and say this isn’t as big a problem as World hunger, I’m sure you can agree it is an unnecessary problem and causes more harm than help. Much like alcohol prohibition did.
    Eradicate drugs… wow… Hello, mr. walters.
    Hate all day, see if anyone cares.

  7. Wow, the trolls are starting to come out. Must mean we’ve stuck a nerve. I’ll be donating my tax rebate to NORML when it comes in. We need those commercials on the air.

  8. “This dog was born in East Germany, it’s father could have pulled someone down off the Berlin Wall…this dog’s great-grandfather would have marched the Jews or Gypsies to the ovens at Buchenwald or Auschwitz… ”
    Geez! Ya think you might be just a little bit racist against all thing German? Get over it, will ya?

  9. made mine this morning 03-03-09 1st time norml donation but i feel as i will be rewarded when it is legal. or i might reward myself tonight.

  10. Anon Says:
    March 2nd, 2009 at 5:08 pm
    I can’t believe that anyone could even BEGIN to put dope against the berlin wall!! Get real people!! The only similarity is that they screw(ed) lives up!
    The oppression of a people, shootings, totalitarianism, tyranny.. yeah, they’re the same as “Sorry dude, you cant light up here…”.. Wow.. some people..
    Please grow up and stop thinking this is some crusade…why not put your energies into sorting out poverty? or hunger? or racism? or (shock horror) pushing our politicians to bring war criminals to justice… I promise if you sorted these out, maybe the world wouldnt be such a thing you’d want to escape
    Ehem…..
    Legalizing cannabis just might save you from poverty and hunger.
    Comments like yours show the effective job the government has done brainwashing you into believing that it’s only OK to get high on alcohol.
    Please – YOU GROW UP!

  11. i cant wait to see these on TV just gave 50 bucks. I love you all. I want to give more because I am very happy. thank you

  12. 2750.00
    + 1500.00
    + 4900.00
    = 9150.00
    So for 9150.00, NORML can purchase all three packages.
    Correct me if I am wrong. Didn’t NORML just give away
    10,000.00 to ad contest winners? Shouldn’t those ads
    have been donated? Then NORML would have plenty of money for the ads. I am slightly confused by this..
    Somebody please explain! I would think Bill Maher could easily donate 9150.00, especially in rough times…

  13. Is Marijuana Prohibition America’s ‘Berlin Wall’?
    – – – MJ Prohibition is far worse than that;
    It’s a form of ‘botanical genocide’
    against a beautiful, versatile plant-species
    put here for our use as food, for fiber / building-material, plastics-feedstock, as an energy-source and for medicine
    by Creator-God.
    – – MJ Prohibition is a form of oppression / ‘downpression’ / holocaust / persecution
    against the plant’s advocates / those who might find this plant useful,
    and / or those who appear to be one who does.*
    *(Such as the late Kathryn Johnston, 92, of Atlanta, GA,
    who died in a no-knock SWAT-TEAM police-raid November 21st, 2006,
    based upon the FALSE testimony of an informant,
    that she was ‘SELLING DRUGS’).
    SEE:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kathryn_Johnston
    Having a form of ‘godliness’,
    yet denying the power thereof:
    – – – How ironic that those in the U.S. most fiercely maintaining MJ-Prohibition
    are located in the so-called Bible-Belt and / or are some of the people professing to be ‘Christians’ /
    ‘Bible-believers’, and yet still denying the full, complete implications of the Creator’s WORD
    stated in the very first chapter of their own copies of Holy Scripture;
    – -This stance is justified by the supposition that
    the Creator’s words in Genesis 1:12, 1:29-30,
    (1:12 All plants which God had made, are declared ‘good’…
    as food for… 1:29 Humans, and 1:30 Animals),
    are no longer fully applicable today because of . . .
    (1)
    – – The fall of Adam & Eve into sin,
    (the surface of earth consequently sprouting useless weeds / thistles as a result…).
    (2)
    – – Extrapolation of the biblical warnings against alcohol intoxication to apply towards
    cannabis, (only more so, since it’s an evil. immoral, ‘ill-eagle’ “DRUG!”…).
    (3)
    – – That use / consumption of anything that dramatically changes one’s consciousness is
    a form of ‘witchcraft’ / ‘tool of the devil’, whereas the only REAL sin / shortcoming in this case
    might be OVERINDULGENCE, not the plant-species in question, nor its partaker / caretaker.
    (Alcohol is one of the easiest things to overindulge in,
    and far more dangerous to self and others than is said-same cannabis overindulgence).
    —————————————————————————*
    Tear DOWN the WALL!
    – – – KUDOS! to those in California, (and elsewhere in the U.S.),
    who participate in drafting better legislation for regulating / governing the
    rightful uses of this remarkable plant, setting standards for purity / product-quality,
    responsible use, truthful scientific research of its properties / effects. 😀
    (As opposed to the ONDCP’s,
    (Office of National Deception Concerning Plants /
    Office of National Deception for Corrupt Profit),
    ‘negative-findings-only allowed’ policy… at the expense of truth / actuality). 🙁
    * * * The U.S. government’s regulation of cannabis ought only be in the same manner as
    for any other form of ‘farm-produce’ / agricultural product, rather than
    pretending it’s a hazard worse than radioactive isotopes or toxic-chemical waste….* * *
    (The 70+ years of ongoing MJ Prohibition-policies are where the truest danger is !!! ).
    – – To those detractors, cannabis-haters, O.N.Deceived Comment-Posters…
    – – Please watch / view the following 2008 NORML
    ad-contest winning Public Service Announcement videos HERE:
    http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=FCCDE10CF60ECBCC

  14. At the bottom of the NORML home page there is a section devoted to articles “From the Wire”.
    I read the article titled “Ending The War On Drugs” by Silja J.A. Talvi.
    This is an exerpt:
    “Perhaps the biggest obstacle to significant drug policy reform will come from the federal Office of National Drug Control Policy ( ONDCP ) and its director, the so-called Drug Czar.
    John Walters, the Bush administration’s drug czar, continued to put most federal funding dollars into law enforcement and interdiction efforts, blithely touting record-high drug arrest numbers as a sign of progress, even as independent surveys indicate rising levels of substance use and abuse among American teens.
    Obama has yet to name a permanent drug czar. ( He named Ed Jurith, a long-time ONDCP bureaucrat, its acting director, but Jurith is widely considered a temporary placeholder. ) Much of the speculation has centered around former Rep. Jim Ramstad ( R-Minn. ), a recovering alcohol abuser who favors some treatment options, particularly faith-based and 12-step programs.
    But Ramstad also opposes decriminalization, legalization and medical marijuna–to the extent that any debate is out of the question. He also wants to continue the federal ban on needle-exchange funding, a stance Obama does not agree with. Indeed, word of his consideration has brought together a broad coalition of groups in opposition, ranging from Students for a Sensible Drug Policy, to the National Black Police Association, to medical marijuna proponents to HIV/AIDS prevention groups.”
    What I want to know is how long ago did Silja write this article as it does not mention the new Drug Czar pick – the police chief from Seattle?
    Please get the facts straight.

  15. I believe legalizing the use of marijuana will increase are chance of improving our economic state. If taxed the government will have an extra source of profit. The amount of money paid for enforcement will be eliminated and cunsumer spending will increase. It will bring money into America instead of continuing the blown up trade deficit. the public majority wants marijauna to be legalized some just don’t know it yet.We as people who obviously think it would better our nation, should help people who are unaware of these positives.

  16. good point Mike. (#47) Maybe Norml should have used the possibility of these ads being on national tv as a reward for winners. Then the “prize money” could be used to pay for some ads. $10 grand……:)
    Also, lets get some feedback from Norml on this progress bar, as well as, verification on the networks.

  17. Honestly, I completely agree Mike. I don’t understand why i keep hearing “Smoking weed hurts… More than just you.” and I’ve not once heard “i got high and nobody died”.. Where is the balance?
    Can we get some wealthy cannabis users? please and THANK YOU.
    And the Berlin wall example is not meant to be a literal translation.. simply that they have somewhat similar by-products. Yes, we acknowledge that the Berlin wall was far more tyrannical and evil than cannabis prohibition.. Its a powerful example in effort to send a powerful message…. Stop being easily offended. Nobody hates the German people on NORML.. I can honestly say I don’t think anyone who cares about this cause can, in good conscience, hate anyone. Because we understand how it feels to be judged, stereotyped, prosecuted, ignored, and socially out-casted.. Maybe I’m simply speaking of the experiences I’m familiar with.. but I don’t feel it’s difficult to see my point of view. Most everyone can understand how these things feel even if they have not felt them personally. The fact that they exist period is enough for me to start caring… Do you care about others’ plights?

  18. I am only 16, but I have a paypal account XD!
    I will see what I can do. I would LOVE to see a NORML ad on TV!

  19. Is Marijuana Prohibition America’s ‘Berlin Wall’?
    – – – MJ Prohibition is far worse than that;
    It’s a form of ‘botanical genocide’
    against a beautiful, versatile plant-species
    put here for our use as food, for fiber / building-material, plastics-feedstock, as an energy-source and for medicine
    by Creator-God.
    – – MJ Prohibition is a form of oppression / ‘downpression’ / holocaust / persecution
    against the plant’s advocates / those who might find this plant useful,
    and / or those who appear to be one who does.*
    *(Such as the late Kathryn Johnston, 92, of Atlanta, GA,
    who died in a no-knock SWAT-TEAM police-raid November 21st, 2006,
    based upon the FALSE testimony of an informant,
    that she was ‘SELLING DRUGS’).
    SEE:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kathryn_Johnston
    Having a form of ‘godliness’,
    yet denying the power thereof:
    – – – How ironic that those in the U.S. most fiercely maintaining MJ-Prohibition
    are located in the so-called Bible-Belt and / or are some of the people professing to be ‘Christians’ /
    ‘Bible-believers’, and yet still denying the full, complete implications of the Creator’s WORD
    stated in the very first chapter of their own copies of Holy Scripture;
    – -This stance is justified by the supposition that
    the Creator’s words in Genesis 1:12, 1:29-30,
    (1:12 All plants which God had made, are declared ‘good’…
    as food for… 1:29 Humans, and 1:30 Animals),
    are no longer fully applicable today because of . . .
    (1)
    – – The fall of Adam & Eve into sin,
    (the surface of earth consequently sprouting useless weeds / thistles as a result…).
    (2)
    – – Extrapolation of the biblical warnings against alcohol intoxication to apply towards
    cannabis, (only more so, since it’s an evil. immoral, ‘ill-eagle’ “DRUG!”…).
    (3)
    – – That use / consumption of anything that dramatically changes one’s consciousness is
    a form of ‘witchcraft’ / ‘tool of the devil’, whereas the only REAL sin / shortcoming in this case
    might be OVERINDULGENCE, not the plant-species in question, nor its partaker / caretaker.
    (Alcohol is one of the easiest things to overindulge in,
    and far more dangerous to self and others than is said-same cannabis overindulgence).
    —————————————————————————*
    Tear DOWN the WALL!
    – – – KUDOS! to those in California, (and elsewhere in the U.S.),
    who participate in drafting better legislation for regulating / governing the
    rightful uses of this remarkable plant, setting standards for purity / product-quality,
    responsible use, truthful scientific research of its properties / effects. 😀
    (As opposed to the ONDCP’s,
    (Office of National Deception Concerning Plants /
    Office of National Deception for Corrupt Profit),
    ‘negative-findings-only allowed’ policy… at the expense of truth / actuality). 🙁
    * * * The U.S. government’s regulation of cannabis ought only be in the same manner as
    for any other form of ‘farm-produce’ / agricultural product, rather than
    pretending it’s a hazard worse than radioactive isotopes or toxic-chemical waste….* * *
    (The 70+ years of ongoing MJ Prohibition-policies are where the truest danger is !!! ).
    – – To the detractors, cannabis-haters, O.N.Deceived Comment-Posters…
    – – Please watch / view the following 2008 NORML
    ad-contest winning Public Service Announcement videos HERE:
    http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=FCCDE10CF60ECBCC

  20. Hello Mike & typodemon,
    May I suggest it imprudent, deceitful, unethical and maybe illegal for NORML to publicly advertise cash prize awards, select the winners publicly, then not remit the prizes to the winners.
    What kind of non-profit organization do you think NORML is?
    A bait and switch fly-by-night?
    There is a reason why NORML enjoys immense public trust and credibility as a genuinely grassroots organization after 38 years, notably among the cannabis consuming community, and that kind of special public interest trust would be tarnished beyond belief if the organization appropriated activists’ contest submissions and didn’t follow through on an obviously implied social contract by awarding the winners their cash prizes.
    BTW, FYI, some of the winners have donated a portion of their winnings in support of the TV ad buy campaign.
    Also, donations raised in support of the ad buys is not co-mingled with the cash rewards. The reward money was largely raised by a NORML board member and his family.
    Soon there will be 1) a donation meter placed on norml.org reflecting donations-to-date in support of the TV ad buys (by my estimation, $10,000-$12,000 so far) and 2) Once the ad packages have been accepted and purchased by the myriad cable outlets that are part of the multi-assortment of cable TV package buys presented, there will be an interactive map posted indicating states where the ads are running, and likely among what specific types of programming.
    Lastly, re your ‘belief’ that Bill Maher can (or morally should) contribute $10,000 speaks to what I personally see as major flaw in the movement to reform cannabis laws, and that is the want of some pro-reformers for celebrities (Maher, Nelson, Harrelson, Snoop, etc…) and athletes (Phelps, Holmes, Carter, etc…) and billionaires (Lewis, Soros, Sperling, etc…) to, in effect, purchase the freedom and liberation that tens of millions of closeted cannabis fear to fund and seize themselves.
    Celebrities, athletes and businesspeople all are important colors in the marijuana movement’s rainbow, but nothing changes laws like stakeholders’ investments and participation in their own liberation.
    ;D)
    Thanks for your support of cannabis law reform!
    Ever higher,
    -Allen
    NORML
    ——————————————
    2750.00
    + 1500.00
    + 4900.00
    = 9150.00
    So for 9150.00, NORML can purchase all three packages.
    Correct me if I am wrong. Didn’t NORML just give away
    10,000.00 to ad contest winners? Shouldn’t those ads
    have been donated? Then NORML would have plenty of money for the ads. I am slightly confused by this..
    Somebody please explain! I would think Bill Maher could easily donate 9150.00, especially in rough times…

  21. Look back in history when the BERLIN WALL was built for what purpose but to PROHIBIT the masses on the east side of the wall to go to the west side. Look at our BERLIN WALL on the Mexican border that is trying to be built by our government to keep people coming from the south of the to border to go the north. Our PROHIBITION on Marijuana in America is our BERLIN WALL. WE DON”T NEED NO EDUCATION-WE DON’T NEED NO THOUGHT CONTROL-WE NEED TO LEGALIZE The light at the end of tunnel is getting brighter as time goes by.

  22. Allen, FYI,
    Norml didn’t HAVE to give away cash.
    I have donated hundreds to norml since Jan. ’08.
    And since names such as (Maher, Nelson, Harrelson, Snoop, etc…) have been thrown out there, seems to me that all the ads should have already been on the air.
    But don’t worry Allen, I will continue to contribute until Cannabis is finally legalized..
    p.s. Thanks for your response..

  23. Finally some news about this monumental change. Here’s one more article in part from the Nation:
    By Alex Cockburn
    > But last week the Third Obama got something done. Here’s how it
    > happened. Obama was sworn in as president on January 20 and two days
    > later the Drug Enforcement Agency celebrated the new era by raiding a
    > medical marijuana dispensary in South Lake Tahoe, up in the California
    > Sierra. Now, on the campaign trail Obama was very specific about the
    > relative weight of federal law (which the DEA brandishes) as against
    > state laws decriminalizing or legalizing medical marijuana sale and
    > use in ten states.
    >
    > “What I’m not going to be doing,” he told Gary Nelson of the Medford
    > Mail Tribune, an Oregon paper, “is using Justice Department resources
    > to try to circumvent state laws on this issue simply because I want
    > folks to be investigating violent crimes and potential terrorism.” So
    > to the hopeful medical marijuana lobby the federal DEA raid on Estes
    > came like a punch on the nose. Fred Gardner, who edits
    > O’Shaughnessy’s, a pro-cannabis doctors journal. reported the raid on
    > the CounterPunch website on February 4. One day later the White House
    > announced that President Obama’s commitment to honoring state
    > medical-marijuana law would be implemented by his yet-to-be-named DEA
    > Administrator. On February 26 Attorney General Eric Holder U.S.
    > Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the federal government
    > would no longer raid or prosecute medical marijuana dispensaries in
    > states where they are legal.
    >
    > In 1931, as the economy tanked, and America headed into the Great
    > Depression, the National Economic League polled its members – a sound
    > cross-section of educated opinion – on the nation’s most pressing
    > problems. The easy winner? Prohibition. It cantered home well ahead of
    > “employment and economic stabilization”.
    >
    > It wasn’t officially part of the New Deal, but when prohibition was
    > repealed in December, 1933, millions felt that if the big economic
    > reforms were still well over the horizon, at least they could get a
    > legal drink, one that might not send them blind. The bars opened
    > lawfully and FDR’s popularity soared, same way Obama’s popularity has
    > soared for dope smokers, among them those for whom the herb is the
    > best and cheapest line of defense against pain. The Third Obama
    > honored a commitment and thereby no doubt offended the pharmaceutical
    > industry which correctly sees legal marijuana has representing a
    > potentially huge erosion of its commercial turf. Give the Third Obama
    > a clap on the back. He needs all the encouragement he can get to sneak
    > into the Oval Office more often. The First and Second Obamas can’t
    > hope to stay so high for long in the popularity stakes, and Obama
    > really wants to be liked.

  24. Allen, sorry you misunderstood. Maybe I wasn’t clear.
    I was not implying a bait and switch scheme. I thought that it would be a good idea to not offer the cash prize in the first place, and instead offer the winners TV slots for thier adds. I’m sure any serious ad producer would love to have that publicity. This could have saved the $10,000 to pay the networks. We could already have double the donations. As I think about it though, I guess it would be tough to get decent videos without “some” cash prize.
    I hate to say it, but purchasing our freedom seems necessary now. How much of our tax dollars were spent by pro-prohibition organizations to purchase advertising? I don’t expect any celebrities to donate; even though it would be a drop in the bucket for them to get some real changes rolling.
    It’s great to hear about the progress bar and the interactive map. Thanks for your reply!! Expect my donation soon.:)
    Patrick

    1. Hello Patrick,
      Thanks for your reply.
      NORML has run prior ad contests with little to no prize money, and the quality of the submissions were not nearly as high as the ones submitted this year.
      That WAS the goal of the NORML board member who largely raised the contest prize cash.
      And for those activist who think that celebrities, athletes and billionaires should donate to NORML, I encourage you, their fans who drive their high incomes, to contact them and ask them to donate to NORML.
      These pro-reform celebs are constantly hit up for funding from groups like NORML, DPA, ASA, ACLU, etc…it is not like they don’t know that there is a major effort to reform cannabis laws, but, there is little to no history of them donating large sums of money to support pro-reform endeavors, despite being asked and cajoled.
      But, what if the cadre of pro-cannabis celebs–from Paris Hilton to Brad Pitt to Sara Silverman–heard a loud drumbeat directly from their fans, not from always-with-their-handout non-profit organizations like NORML?
      Would that spur these comfortable celebs to actually donate time and money in favor of reform?
      My guess is, yes!
      Thanks again for your support and reply email,
      -Allen
      NORML

  25. I am very dissapointed.
    I am originally from Long Island, but I have spent the last 30 years travelling and living in various parts of America. I have performed as a musician in over 20 states and I have resided fulltime in NY, PA and NM.
    I have relatives in CA, FL, OK, NY, NM and Maine.
    Every time I make a post here it takes 24 hours for moderation, and usually, afer much moderation gets deleted.
    Look folks – I AM ON YOUR SIDE!!!!!
    The “War on Drugs” has been going on longer in America than legalisation in The Netherlands. #0 years legal in a tiny dot on the map and they have NONE of the problems we have here in the USA. NONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Imagine my anger when – a tiny little dot on the map no larger than Washington DC – AMSTERDAM – is light years ahead of the “so called greatest country on the planet” is SOOOOOO far behind the times!!!!!!
    And yet, NORML deletes many of my posts, probably this one too.
    My point is that there is disticnt relationship between the sterotype of the typical pot smoker vs. the pot smoker who wears a suit and tie, and GUESS WHAT????
    They guy in the suit and tie is going to make a lot more headway than the guy covered in tatooes, face schrapnel and a mouth that spewes out the B word, the F word and the MF word as a matter of typical conversation.
    I’m a 50 year old white guy and there is NO LOGICAL REASON why I have to endure dodging cops to buy something less harmful than Tylenol……
    Please post this within the next 2 hours so that I might not give up on NORML, who has taken all of 30 years to accomplish……………………
    Why is that so hard for you all to understand????

  26. Sorry for the couple of spelling errors.
    I am ADHD, hyperstensive, suffer from anger and depression and have no patience. I have no connections for cannabis, thus my anger and mispelling.

  27. Allen,
    yes, you are probably correct, you make a good point in your last reply. Fans should be hitting up the celebs, even the ones that are already NORML members.
    I’m sure some already donate on a regular basis..
    But moving past the celeb issue,
    Last line from your article,
    “Get out your friggin’ wallets and purses people. Get in the fight and please help us!!! NOW!”
    I’ll tell you what Allen, you just let me know how much more money NORML needs to get these ads started.
    Post some kind of progress bar NOW! Beause my wallet is out and so are those of all my like minded friends.
    So how much more money do you need to get going NORML!!!!!!!
    Mike..

  28. OK guys. If an individual smokes one ounce of good weed in a month, and the price is $400 oz, I’ve just donated 2 1/2 months of my recreation to this campaign.
    I totally agee with Allen in that WE are the stake holders in this battle. I would encourage everyone to give as much as you can afford. We can win!

  29. I am a 42 year old disabled amputee who suffers chronic pain and would probably be on many psychoactive mood levelers like zoloft or xanax if it wasn’t for maryjane. Maryjane lets me keep it real and cool. My mom never smoked pot until she was 41 and only then due to the fact that she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had a hard time keeping food down after taking her medicine or chemotherapy. Even then, it took a lot of coaxing from my potheaded sister for her to try. She is so glad she did. She has been puffing away contentedly for the last 25 years as a cancer survivor. She has also reduced her medication intake with maryjane. We are both paranoid schizophrenics and mary helps us to keep it cool!

  30. #87 # alex Says:
    March 7th, 2009 at 3:17 pm
    when are we going to see these ads on tv?
    RE:
    – – Why wait ’til THAT question is answered…???
    Give out the YouTube-address(es) to everyone you know who are able to watch these videos online! 😉
    YouTube LIST of All Feb 2009 NORML Ad-Contest Winners:
    http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=FCCDE10CF60ECBCC
    The “Yes We Can” Grand-Prize winning video:

    C0mEDE_w1xo&feature=PlayList&p=FCCDE10CF60ECBCC&index=0
    Cannabis Quandary:

    Norml Ad Contest – Nice Peter – Winner, 2nd place:
    ( [i]”Mr. Obama, I kinda wrote this song for you..”[/i] )

    norml ad contest 2009 marijuana weed pot law reform
    (“I’m a Normal Guy…”)

  31. CANNABIS, A BENEFIT TO SOCIETY
    The Cannabis flower is the most effective and versatile medicine known to humankind and the hemp plant can provide non-toxic alternatives to almost every product that people consume, from paper and bath products to building materials. With the legalization of cannabis in all its forms New York State residents will have the opportunity to build a prosperous and healthy life based on locally grown agricultural feedstock, immune to inflation. The key issues are the benefits that we are violently prohibited from enjoying and the atrocity that marijuana prohibition has become.
    Sunday, May 17, the voice of the New York marijuana legalization movement will be heard in Albany again. One month after the rally on the Capitol steps, Abigail Storm is planning a public “Speak Out” in front of the Capitol where anyone who has something to say will have a chance to voice their opinion. This is part of a rallying effort to encourage people to reach out to Governor Paterson and their state representatives for an end to the prohibition of cannabis hemp. But this time Storm is not just rallying outside. 
    The day after the “Speak Out”, On Monday, May 18 she is planning on leading a group of concerned citizens into the Capitol building to ask for an audience with Governor Paterson to address what she calls a crime against humanity being commited by our government. “We don’t need a law to give us permission to use this wonderful plant. God already did that. We need a law to protect us from those who want to deprive us of our rights.” She is serious about getting all of the prisoners out of jail who are in for marijuana and getting their children returned their families. 
    Abigail Storm says, “Its time to plant our seed and give the people a light of hope for a healthy and happy future.” 
    Dunn Eggink, Public Relations
    Hemp Industry Promotions
    845 701 9635
    nycamp.org
    Listen to WAMC Northeast Public Radio News coverage of the April 17 Rally:
    http://www.publicbroadcasting.net/wamc/news/news.newsmain?action=article&ARTICLE_ID=1495124&sectionID=2706

  32. PUT YOUR MONEY WHERE YOUR MOUTH IS JOIN NORML AND STOP MAKING CRIMINALS OUT OF GOOD PEOPLE. TO DATE: DONATED 250.00 AND WILL CONTINUE.

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