Cannabis News Stop the Drug War!
  It's Time To Legalize Marijuana in Illinois
Posted by CN Staff on November 12, 2006 at 06:48:10 PT
By Monroe Anderson 
Source: Chicago Sun-Times 

cannabis Illinois -- The war in Iraq loomed large last week as voters registered their disenchantment during the midterm elections. But lost in all the headlines and nightly news stories about the Republican loss of power were limited status reports on the other American conflict: the War on Weed. In Nevada, an initiative that would have legalized possession of up to an ounce of marijuana for anyone over 21 failed with only a 44 percent yes vote. Las Vegas -- where prostitution and gambling are legal and public intoxication common -- is not quite ready to end the prohibition of pot.

Nonetheless, what nearly happened in Vegas, should never stay in Vegas.

For at least two generations, smoking dope has become an American way of life. According to federal statistics, about 94 million Americans -- or 40 percent of 12-year-olds and up -- admit to having blown some weed; 15 million say they've had a joint within the last month. Eleven states have declared that the drug war has failed, passing laws that say, for adults, taking a toke is no longer a crime. In these states, from Oregon to Maine, from Alaska to Mississippi, holding a joint will no longer result in your sharing a cell with a murderer, rapist or larcenous CEO. Instead, you'll end up with something akin to a slap on the wrist or a ticket and a fine.

There are also 11 states that don't arrest those suffering from the side effects of chemotherapy or AIDS if they use marijuana to ease their pain. But not in Illinois. Despite more than 2-1 public support for medical marijuana legislation and endorsements from health groups, there was not enough support to pass Sen. John Cullerton's (D-Chicago) medical marijuana bill this month.

There is a huge body of evidence, argues Bruce Mirken, spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project, that marijuana prohibition today is working about as well as alcohol prohibition did in the Roaring '20s. In February, no less an authority than the U.S. Justice Department reported in its 2006 Drug Threat Assessment that "marijuana availability is high and stable or increasing slightly.''

The feds have been fighting marijuana since classifying it as a narcotic in the 1930s. Jealous that FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover was getting more press, Harry J. Anslinger, the first commissioner of the Treasury Department's Federal Bureau of Narcotics, started his campaign on cannabis by singlehandedly giving weed a bad rep. Back then, marijuana was the drug of choice for black jazz musicians and Mexicans -- a fact Anslinger was careful to note, pointing out that "it makes the Negro feel as if he is as good as the white man'' and that "all Mexicans are crazy and this stuff makes them crazy.''

Cannabis has been demonized in the nation since, while the desire for it has risen. From the time Anslinger managed to get the drug banned in 1937, Mirken said, use has gone up 2,000 percent.

That has created what Mirken describes as the drug-war-industrial complex, an entire industry from bureaucrats to law enforcement agencies to penal systems that are making money by keeping marijuana illegal.

In the past year, the pot prohibition has produced record devil-weed arrests and a bumper crop of American POWs in our nation's prisons. In 2005, there 786,545 marijuana arrests -- 696,074 just for possession. About 34,000 state and 11,000 federal inmates are incarcerated for marijuana offenses. We're spending $1 billion a year to put them there and another $8 billion a year to keep them there.

We could regulate, license and tax marijuana. Instead we blow billions on busting and jailing peaceful citizens from whom we could collect millions in tax revenue -- much like we do with alcohol.

For our nation's lawmakers to not grasp such a commonsense approach, you've got to wonder what they've been smoking.

Source: Chicago Sun-Times (IL)
Author: Monroe Anderson
Published: November 12, 2006
Copyright: 2006 The Sun-Times Co.
Contact: letters@suntimes.com
Website: http://www.suntimes.com/

Marijuana Policy Project
http://www.mpp.org/

CannabisNews -- Cannabis Archives
http://cannabisnews.com/news/list/cannabis.shtml


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Comment #21 posted by afterburner on November 14, 2006 at 20:26:04 PT
Aftermath #7
Michael Baldasaro polled 4th place (out of a field of 7 candidates) in the Mayoral race for Hamilton, Ontario's new Mayor.

Fred Eisenberger 54,110 *Elected

Larry Di Ianni 53,658 *Incumbent - Defeated

Diane Elms 9,459

Michael Baldasaro 4,520 *pro-cannabis

Gino Speziale 1,274

Steve Leach 1,250

Martin Samuel Zuliniak 968

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #20 posted by whig on November 12, 2006 at 15:26:46 PT
gw
I'm not telling anyone else to stop voting.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #19 posted by whig on November 12, 2006 at 15:24:08 PT
gw
I'm done pressing buttons for now.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #18 posted by Hope on November 12, 2006 at 13:22:30 PT
Happy Birthday
Mr. Young. I'm glad you've made it this many years...and wish that you "make it" many more years as well. You and your gifts are a blessing for us all.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #17 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 13:10:19 PT
rEACH FOR THE sTARS
REACH INTO your soul

Freedom is another word for GOD

And Soul

It is our place to witness



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #16 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 13:03:09 PT
RE: We, as adults, have voices and choices.
tHAT IS WHY cANNABIS PROHIBITION WILL END..



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #15 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 12:55:04 PT
PRESS THAT fREEDOM bUTTON

i vOTE FOR CANNABIS TO BE FREE



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #14 posted by jasgrave333 on November 12, 2006 at 12:53:53 PT:

Ta all bredren and sistren - One love, one heart..
...just ta say agreed, we have a right to Free.dom

we are living on just one planet, this 3rd rock from the sun.

We, as adults, have voices and choices. Use them wisely we should...

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #13 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 12:48:52 PT
press
that good button



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #12 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 12:46:33 PT
half way home
remember

Your place when you can press the button of FREEDOM



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #11 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 12:41:01 PT
re: ta all mi bredren & sistren
one planet

one place



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #10 posted by jasgrave333 on November 12, 2006 at 12:26:26 PT:

Psalm 133
The good OIL is running down, we Cannabis consumers, growers, cultivators, educators have the duty to spread the one-love peace-ful words of herbal healing.

It's about time Cannabis was legalised for the world.

Only we as Cannabis role-models, can change the world view of our wonderful spiritual sacrement.

Peace and one love ta all mi bredren&Sistren

from St Christopher here in the Caribbean.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #9 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 12:18:09 PT
remember
I remember that Jesus Loves Me

I remember when Moses came down from the mountain

I remember when power was to God



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #8 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 12:08:23 PT
re: Press that free button
Press that button if you can see

And if you cannot see, then press the button that you hear, and the button you listen to every night, will fill your heart and soul, ever closer to that 'place'



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #7 posted by afterburner on November 12, 2006 at 12:02:14 PT
Why Are People So Obsessed
Alison Myrden and Russell Barth are obsessed with cannabis because it is a medicine that eases their pain and suffering.

Michael Baldasaro, 2006 Hamilton Mayoral candidate, and Stan White are obsessed with cannabis because they are thankful to and respectful of the Creator who gave it to humans as a blessing and a healing of the nations.

Many people around the world -- and the number is growing every year -- are obsessed with cannabis because bad men like Harry Anslinger and his political descendants (doctors, pharmacists, police, lawmakers, psychiatrists, jailers, alcohol dealers) are obsessed with demonizing this useful plant.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #6 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 11:59:09 PT
Did You Choose
To see the next page?

Pres that free button



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #5 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 11:47:35 PT
was Jesus a drug peddler ?
Joh 2:1 On the third day a wedding took place in Cana of Galilee. Jesus' mother was there, and

Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding as well.

When the wine ran out, Jesus' mother told Him, "They don't have any wine."

"What has this concern of yours to do with Me, woman?" Jesus asked. "My hour has not yet come."

"Do whatever He tells you," His mother told the servants.

Now six stone water jars had been set there for Jewish purification. Each contained 20 or 30 gallons.

"Fill the jars with water," Jesus told them. So they filled them to the brim.

Then He said to them, "Now draw some out and take it to the chief servant." And they did.

When the chief servant tasted the water (after it had become wine), he did not know where it came from--though the servants who had drawn the water knew. He called the groom

and told him, "Everybody sets out the fine wine first, then, after people have drunk freely, the inferior. But you have kept the fine wine until now."

Fine wine and alcohol.

Today If Jesus was dealing in Alcohol, some government agency would swoop down and take his property away from him, so he could no longer be a carpenter, no money, Jesus would die.



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #4 posted by global_warming on November 12, 2006 at 11:08:36 PT
re: drug-war-industrial complex
...an entire industry from bureaucrats to law enforcement agencies to penal systems that are making money by keeping marijuana illegal...

It is starting to crumble, and those ansligers and nixons may some day be remembered, I certainly will never forget the shitheads with their fedoras as they are laid to rest.

Good riddance now and forever.



[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #3 posted by whig on November 12, 2006 at 10:38:50 PT
It's not Devil-Weed
Cannabis is God's creation.

[ Post Comment ]
 
Comment #2 posted by FoM on November 12, 2006 at 10:30:50 PT
Roger and Out: A Veteran's Memorial

http://www.neilyoung.com/lwwtoday/lwwvideos/rogerandout_wm.html

[ Post Comment ]

 
Comment #1 posted by FoM on November 12, 2006 at 09:55:41 PT
OT: Happy 61st Birthday Neil Young
Neil Young Feat. Crosby Stills Nash - Long May You Run

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMOHqbJeZIw&mode=related&search=

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