Prohibitionists Don't Read The Papers

Say what you will about prohibitionists — and I say plenty — but, if nothing else, they are consistent. Regardless of the circumstances, they stick to their talking points — no matter how instantly refutable their claims may be.
Case in point. CBS News online today ran part one of an ongoing debate between recently retired Orange County, California Judge Jim Gray (who many of you recently watched testify before the California Assembly Committee on Public Safety here) and prohibitionist profiteer David Evans (who was last heard lying about medical marijuana law reform in New Jersey in a debate with NORML’s Chris Goldstein, which may be heard here).
Predictably, early in the CBS News debate Evans cites the Netherlands’ pot policies — which allow for the regulated sale of small amounts of cannabis to citizens age 18 an older — as an argument in favor of maintaining U.S.-style marijuana prohibition. According to Evans, Dutch marijuana use “more than doubled” after liberalization, leading the government to “formally announce its mistake” in 2004.
Hmmm, I guess Mr. Evans must have purposely avoided reading the newspaper last week or else he would have seen this widely disseminated report from Reuters Wire Service, published on Friday.

Dutch among lowest cannabis users in Europe — report
via Reuters
The Dutch are among the lowest users of marijuana or cannabis in Europe despite the Netherlands’ well-known tolerance of the drug, according to a regional study published on Thursday. Among adults in the Netherlands, 5.4 percent used cannabis, compared with the European average of 6.8 percent, according to an annual report by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, using latest available figures.
… The policy on soft drugs in the Netherlands, one of the most liberal in Europe, allows for the sale of marijuana at “coffee shops”, which the Dutch have allowed to operate for decades, and possession of less than 5 grams (0.18 oz).

Not surprisingly, Evans also failed to cite a World Health Organization report, published last year, which reported:

US leads the world in illegal drug use
via CBS News
Despite tough anti-drug laws, a new survey shows the U.S. has the highest level of illegal drug use in the world.
The World Health Organization’s survey of legal and illegal drug use in 17 countries, including the Netherlands and other countries with less stringent drug laws, shows Americans report the highest level of cocaine and marijuana use.
For example, Americans were four times more likely to report using cocaine in their lifetime than the next closest country, New Zealand (16% vs. 4%). Marijuana use was more widely reported worldwide, and the U.S. also had the highest rate of use at 42.4% compared with 41.9% of New Zealanders.
In contrast, in the Netherlands, which has more liberal drug policies than the U.S., only 1.9% of people reported cocaine use and 19.8% reported marijuana use.

The WHO report went on to conclude: “The Netherlands, with a less criminally punitive approach to cannabis use than the U.S., has experienced lower levels of use, particularly among younger adults. Clearly, by itself, a punitive policy towards possession and use accounts for limited variation in national rates of illegal drug use.
But Mr. Evans isn’t content to just simply lie about the Dutch. Elsewhere in the debate he falsely implies that the U.K. also experienced a spike in marijuana use after the British government temporarily downgraded its cannabis classification in 2004. (Parliament ended its experiment with decriminalization in 2008, a move that Evans argues was because of “the more lethal quality of the cannabis now available.”) The truth, however, was just the opposite.

Fewer young people using cannabis after reclassification

via The Guardian
Cannabis use among young people has fallen significantly since its controversial reclassification in 2004, according to the latest British Crime Survey figures published today.
The Home Office figures showed the proportion of 16 to 24-year-olds who had used cannabis in the past year fell from 25% when the change in the law was introduced to 21% in 2006/07.

As for anyone who thinks they can stomach reading Mr. Evans lies in part two of the debate, be sure to log on here tomorrow.

0 thoughts

  1. Thank You so much for the continuation of the work you folks do in debunking these frauds and keeping on the fight on the front lines. I’m 57 and hope to be able to see many things before I go. Legalization and taxing of ALL hemp production in US.

  2. they simply don’t get it. they care nothing about what the average joe thinks. they are selfish and are leeches of society. and half of America believes these prohibitionists!
    nothing sort of being punched in the face will ever fix these twisted human souls….

  3. Well it just goes to show that most prohibitionists will not change their way of thinking.I live in Oklahoma,our US Senator Tom Coburn,who also is a medical doctor,has said that Cannabis has no medical benifits whatsoever. Coburn and Evans make a “good” team

  4. Well said about the prohibitionist. They are liars from the very beginning and they would remain that way to the very end.

  5. Of course they are! It’s a question of ideology for them… just like Darwin’s 150year old research was turn into materialistic ideology…and despite huge amount of new evidences right into their faces, its still blooming today, destroying the planet and dividing the people. But since it’s each individual’s own responsibility to open their minds there’s some point of life to it)))

  6. Judge Gray is the only guy presenting rational arguments. Any person with a brain who reads that stuff will know the difference.
    This is the era of the internet, information, YouTube, GOOGLE search. 1972, they managed to lie their way out of the strengthening reform movement, but be assured that they will have a hard time this time.
    This is why Obama won the Presidency, because the internet! Now that this issue is picking up speed again, the truth will eventually win; the facts are on our side, and the information cannot be suppressed.

  7. I just want to say another fine job by NORML for pointing out and debunking yet another wave of lies and misinformation. The truth is on our side and I thank you guys for posting not only the truth, but the links to prove it. I use these facts to re-educate people I meet in my life who are misinformed about cannabis and I recommend anyone else to do the same.

  8. One of the lies the prohibitionists put out there is that no one goes to jail for weed anymore. Big Lie.
    I would like to relate what the court of a town in Texas imposed on me for possession of a small amount of marijuana (about 2 joints worth) this past year. I am not a dealer. Texas does not have a medical defense.
    First, I should point out that this is not my first go-round with Texas. I was caught with a misdemeanor amount several years ago in a another Texas town, which this court and hard core judge and District Attorney consider your one chance. For that charge, I lost my driver license for six months, paid out money for a lawyer, had to post bond and paid other Texas fees to get my license back. It all adds up $$.
    Probation is routine here, dismissal is unlikely and many get 30-90 days jail for this type of 2nd offense and of course ALWAYS a heavy fine. Both times, the cops violated my right against illegal search and got away with it.
    For a misdemeanor, 2nd offense, I got a $2000.00 fine, 1-2 years probation (I might get off of it early if all my fines are paid in advance, go figure), 3 days jail and community service. The only bright spot, the charge is deferred if I stay out of trouble, so I don’t lose my license. My only other option was to take it to jury trial and hope for the best, which would cost me thousands for the lawyer, who I suspect is part of the system. I am on fixed income, I just cannot afford it. If I lost, the judge would go with whatever the DA recommended, which would be jail, fine, etc. In this “bible belt” town, they regard pot as a gateway drug and impose stiff penalties. That’s the official story, the truth is they want a lot of your money. Like I said, this is not unusual.
    Also, the reason they incarcerate is also for the money, they get paid by the federal government every time you book in to a jail. So, they got paid twice for me, as they made me bond out and wait many months for a court date and now 3 more days as part of my “punishment”. Only one county in Texas, Austin, honors the 2007 law that says the cop does not have to take you to jail when you are first caught. This was not that county.
    I am almost 60 years years old and have multiple health issues including chronic pain in my muscles which I have lived with every day for years. I just can’t take the chance of long term jail, so I took the deal. People die in jails. I humbly join the other thousands of people who have been subjected to this.
    Now, I will be like the other good little “sheeple” and use hydrocodone, darvocet or some other “harmless” drug when I need pain relief. However, unlike some I have read about who had their right to free speech stripped away, this will not stop me from talking about it.
    Cash Cow

  9. Sure, use goes down when recreational drug use is decriminalized. Why? Because it undermines and corrodes black market trafficking. Because it sterilizes the social networks that reinforce drug use, especially among youth. In the Netherlands, drug use is probably even less than reported. It’s probably mostly tourists. The legal drug trade in the Netherlands is largely tourist driven and why? Becaues its criminality in the rest of Europe and the US makes it a romantic draw from these places. If we ended the global Drug War, the cannabis tourists in the Netherlands would vanish overnight.

  10. Stomach part 2? Negative. This dam liar. We need more open public debates to prove dicks like him wrong. We need to listen to stompedonmyrights and learn and use jury nullification. We need to get the truth out there to all who are ignorant.

  11. Unfortunately, on that note, check out “religious leaders” speaking out against legalization in California saying, among other things, that AB390 will legalize the sale of marijuana and paraphernalia, even to minors.
    How do we start holding prohibitionists’ feet to the fire? Two different conversations seem to go on when a prohibitionist engages in a debate. Is the average American catching on to these tactics? That doesn’t come off confusing and embarrassing to even those who aren’t “legalizers”?

  12. It makes me sick to my stomach to hear people like Mr. Evans lie about cannabis and continue to get away with it. Until we have the major news stations call him out on these lies, the lies will continue, and we will never have change.

  13. The picture of Mr. Evans was very revealing to me. He looks like someone right out of the 40’s. He has an arrogant looking face too.
    What I liked about the discussion was Judge Jim Gray slamming Evans slang – the “legalizers”.
    It is something people should read because we learn each time how to more effectively fine-tune our responses to false and backwards thinking.

  14. Normally it does not bother me when the prohibitionists come out and try to sell their lies. However, it really makes me laugh to see a prohibitionist. trying to use the Netherlands policy as a tool in a debate. That’s hilarious. Maybe the next time they take a look at statistics according NIDA they can find out that America has a higher cocaine usage rate than the Netherlands marijuana usage rate.
    Good work, Paul, there really is not much to say when the information is presented in front of you in this manner. It is right there. Now why can that not be enough to catch the attention of Americans?

  15. While Judge Jim Gray or anybody piles up many different argument points, Mr. Evans is just going to be repeating the same thing over and over and over. Prohibitionist’s are standing on one leg right now and are losing every battle as they should. Any educated American citizen can see that Mr. Evans must think we are all stupid and he’s the only intelligent one in this country.

  16. All the prohibitionistic rhetoric, lies and insanity makes one wonder if they don’t actually WANT kids and citizens in the USA to use MORE cannabis. Well, that would make sense since the prohibitionists make such a killing off of prohibition. If it were ended, what would have have to do for money then, start being honest? Not possible.
    Time for the liars, snake-oil salesmen, and corrupt to be ousted from positions of power. Time for the USA to wake the hell up and stop allowing the government to abuse their human rights.

  17. My father taught me a long time ago not to argure with fools, it is impossible to change ignorance like the ignorance displayed by Mr.Evans.
    Judge Grey is an honrable Federal judge and has been an outspoken critic of the war on drugs for years.
    Bravo to Judge Grey!
    “Much virtue in herbs, little in men.”
    Benjamin Franklin

  18. I find it funny that Prohibitionists label stoners as criminals…..when all that most potheads want; is LEGALization. Since whwn do CRIMINALS fight for LEGALization???
    CASE & POINT: Al Capone. I don’t EVER remember reading or hearing about his presence at a protest to legalize Booz. WHY?? Because he was MORE than happy to operate(as a criminal), illegally. Most stoners I….*scratch that*…ALL the stoners I know just want to be able to come out of the shadows and NOT be slapped with a prejudice label.

    We would all like to live in a perfect world…[wouldn’t] that be great! But…that just [ain’t] possible. So!…those who feel that they are perfect…use fantacy and pretention to fill the gap of absolute perfection…whereas the not so perfect have to rely on reality to achieve the “Real McCoy.”
    A growing 85% of We the People are “DEMANDING” the complete legalization of cannabis for accepted medical use. If there’s any misunderstanding about the word “DEMANDING”…We the People prefer “PETITION MANDAMUS.” To those who are any part of that shrinking 15% of medical prohibitionists…it’s time to take a “REALISTIC VIEW”…and in doing so…you will find that Qualifies Patients are equally concerned about drug abuse as anyone…and…support the policy of Harm Reduction…and…we all have children too.
    As far as We the People are concerned…a growing 85% are “FLYING THEIR FLAGS UPSIDE DOWN. Let’s see if you prohibs can figure out who that might be…or…how much that will spill over into other areas you are acquainted with. You’ll know at the polls. But…
    remember too…like Babe Ruth said…”YOU’RE ONLY AS GOOD AS YOUR LAST GAME.”
    Manford Mantis

  20. @ 16 Mikey, It’s so tempting to write them, but for now the advice I’m taking to heart is to ignore the blind guides. As well as “don’t give your pearls to pigs or things to dogs that are holy.”
    I know it’s hard to swallow, but in the long run everyone will see their shame and how wrong they are/were to force their evil religion of hate against marijuana/God’s plants on the whole world.

  21. Judge Gray demolished David Evans, wiped the floor with him, and handed his ass to him on a silver platter simultaneously.

  22. Why should prohibitionists allow themselves to be confused with the facts? After all, they are self-entitled to run other people’s lives, just like the sociopaths prohibitionists by definition are. Prohibitionists have never ultimately prevailed even once in the past, and I doubt their current crimes against humanity, i.e. the drug war, will prevail this time. Why? Because it is God’s will for people to live in freedom with liberty as acknowledged and cited in the Constitution of the United States. Prohibitionists are part of the problem, not the solution.

  23. whatever happened to power to the people? wasn’t our government powered by the people? SHOULDN’T the government do what the people WANT? not what THEY think is in the best interest in the country? why is it the people in power deny what the people want? i know for a fact if they held an “election” just as we do for our president to legalize marijuana, the outcome would be completely one sided. skip the middle men in power and go directly to the source.

  24. lots analize others to the point of what did they say
    if you comment its cause you like to read , an if the
    parliment bores others its because its to add a question
    id say photo radar is more of the cash cow,but then in
    toronto,ont they have other traffic cameras its what
    others say is a safety issue it could be your spouse
    on camera an you think would you!some might say hmmm!
    others say well work , vote,live an lets hope for
    bieng seen on camera its not for the busted file letters
    of the past.

  25. if we taxed this stupid stuff and stop trying to take over every body else’s country we might be able to get our selfs out of this financial whole we put our selfs in. why cant paople undersatnd that we are a new generation of open minded people and we think with logic and not ignorance. I for one will be a supporter of this revolution, and i will not continue to fight for a country who doesnt even hear our voice. one thing we need to do as inforcer’s of this new found glory is speek out, vote,get the facts. I would rather spend my tax dollars finding killers rapist and thiefs then tryig to stop people from get stoned.
    Oh and for all those holy ninjas that think they are doing the right thing by going against the grain with this fight, let me tell you that you all make me laugh. maybe if you smoked a joint you wouldnt be so worried about judging others so often. Let me also ad that i was born and raised hear and so where my parents and so on, and they faught for us to have a voice, so lets honor them and not give up the fight.
    i love america!!
    U.S.M.C. ooorahhhh

  26. Someone needs to investigate how many drug busts went down in Mt. Pleasant, Cleveland, Ohio while corpses rotted inside the home of a known rapist.
    How many women died because the cops were busy busting young black men to send to the corporate prison system that’s evolving in our sick society? Why were the cops so distracted that in the span of three years, they never found time to investigate the stench of dead bodies?
    Prohibition is one more tool of institutionalized racism. White kids walk when they get busted and grow up to be VP’s of sales for bailed out auto companies or some such 6 figure job. Black kids go back & to through the revolving door prison for profit system that we have allowed to evolve. Shame on us – and if we don’t fix it while Obama’s in office – god knows when it’ll be fixed. Think Sarah Palin will see the light?

  27. Well, well, well, I see there are some very liberal people on here. Must be democrats. ha ha ha.
    90Frank4-it’s a good thing I wasn’t your supervisor. If I had caught you not arresting for marijuana, I would have written you up and if that behavior continued would have tried to had you fired. That is dereliction of duty at its worse. If you let that slide you obviously let other serious crimes slide. Seems like you are a law enforcement leech. Takes a salary while playing cop! To me that’s just as dishonest as stealing. You did not uphold the laws you swore to uphold.
    If any of you have had any DWI/DUI/DRE training you know full well how intoxicating marijuana can be and for those of you who think it doesn’t lead to other drug usage, please, don’t even go there. Most if not all people who use the harder drugs have at least tried marijuana. Just ask.
    So, NO, do not legalize marijuana for any reason. It may not be as bad as coke but none the less should not be ok to use. Unless I have been mis-informed, the ingredient in the junk that is used for medical purposes can also be made in a lab without the need for it to be grown illegally so why have it?
    [Editor’s note: Cannabis must be legalized in a country where the local, county, state and federal governments allow the manufacture and sale of actual death-inducing drugs–notably alcohol and tobacco products–and benefit from the high ‘vice’ sales taxes on cultivation, distribution and sales of said products.
    Unless an individual also strongly believes that alcohol and tobacco products are inherently evil, dangerous please-seeking products, they can’t make a straight faced argument that cannabis cultivators, sellers and consumers suffer moral turpitude and therefore deserve to be treated like criminals.
    Further, anyone who embraces the myth of the so-called gateway theory is either misinformed or ignorant. According to ALL of the government surveys, the first three drugs in America citizens try are caffeine, alcohol and tobacco products–with cannabis being the first illegal drug teens try. The clear and obvious ‘gateway’ products, after breast milk (and some persuasively argue refined sugar products), are caffeine, alcohol and tobacco products–not cannabis.
    Lastly, the only so-called ‘gateway’ cannabis has to hard drugs like cocaine, heroin, meth, etc…is in the illegal, uncontrolled and untaxed distribution channels fostered by illegal drug prohibition. The reason why the Dutch government has supported cannabis ‘coffeeshops’ for 35 years is because by creating lawful, Main Street access to cannabis products for responsible adults, any linkage or casual relationship with hard drug distribution channels are largely eliminated, resulting in markedly lower hard drug use rates, especially among the youth population.
    Some call this, a legal distribution system for adult cannabis use that looks similar to the alcohol distribution model, the foundation of a ‘harm reduction’ based policy for drugs, and it does appear that is where modern and civil societies are evolving to, not an embrace of the tax coffer-draining, Constitution-warping and obviously failed prohibition model for cannabis concocted by racist moralists–like Harry J. Anslinger–in the immediate wake of the federal government’s last failed prohibition.]

  28. to #35..
    coke, meth, crack heads are 90% likely to have smoked weed before. but everyone knows damn well that pot smokers don’t go off trying new shit. we stick to herb and that’s it. if you do another kind of drug you’re no pot head but a damn dope fiend. and why would you rather have someone make an artificial pill to cure something then to take something natural. would you rather have a real woman as a wife or a blow up doll? pretty obvious what you would choose.

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