Here is yet another example of a federal government that will twist and turn in the most constitutionally offensive manner to continue to justify Cannabis Prohibition. In a country with a sacredly held First Amendment and a self-evidently failed public policy like seventy-five years of Cannabis Prohibition, trying to silence a citizen—who spent nearly thirty years of his life behind the government’s prison walls for Cannabis Prohibition-created ‘crimes’—from both criticizing the now unpopular government policies surrounding cannabis and prohibiting him from educating willing senior citizens (and even American Bar Association members!) about cannabis as a safe, affordable and efficient (and in 17 states and the District of Columbia legal) alternative medical option to conventional pharmaceuticals (which are often dangerous and expensive as compared to naturally occurring cannabis).
This is just patently wrong.
Thankfully, led by NORML Legal Committee members Michael Minardi and board member Norm Kent, Robert has very aggressive and competent legal assistance to regain his freedom of speech. But, Robert indicates a need for us all to contact the U.S. Parole Commission and ask that they respect Robert Platshorn’s ability to speak and travel freely in America without fear of federal government reprisals.
This man has done his time, he is not breaking any laws, he believes that Cannabis Prohibition policy is bad public policy, people want to hear him speak based on his life’s experience with the policy. In America, no citizen should fear talking publicly to other citizens about public policy, most especially failed and unpopular ones.
Please get the word out as wide as possible about the federal government trying to stop me from exercising my First Amendment rights to talk publicly about the public policy of Cannabis Prohibition. I was to speak before the national convention of the American Bar Association on Aug. 4th. It would have been a milestone for ending cannabis prohibition. And then the call came, “You are not to travel to promote legalization of marijuana without the express permission of the U.S. Parole Commission in Wash. DC.” This is not a legal condition of parole. It’s a First Amendment violation. If you value your right to free speech, read, act and share. Make a phone call for freedom.
Robert’s federal parole officer, Scott Kirsche, phoned and rescinded his ability to travel to speak to a premiere gathering of American lawyers, prosecutors and judges; a prime public audience, a group of citizens integrally involved in the machinery of Cannabis Prohibition law enforcement extend an invitation to be educated by a citizen ill-effected by an unpopular public policy, and the federal government moves to stop this transfer of human-to-human information.
This is so wrong for so many reason.
Talk about the ‘genie being out of the bottle’, as Robert Platshorn’s crusading educational campaign to south Florida seniors about the need to reform cannabis laws has already been prominently featured in major news outlets over the last three months including the Wall Street Journal, NBC affiliate in Miami and soon to air Comedy Central Daily Show feature that is going to rightly ridicule the federal government for trying to silence Robert Platshorn.
Think the feds are feeling heat on ending Cannabis Prohibition? You bet when they try to stop people from simply talking about the failed public policy.
Kirsche to Hirshorn:
“I am ordered by my superiors [Reginald Michael and Frank Smith] to inform you that your permission to travel to Chicago is rescinded and you cannot travel to promote the legalization of marijuana without the permission of the U.S. Parole Commission in Washington D.C. You must request their permission directly.”
Correspondence to the U.S. Parole Commission may be sent to: