cannabisnews.com: Transcripts: Buchanan and Press - Keith Stroup










††Transcripts: Buchanan and Press - Keith Stroup

Posted by CN Staff on May 02, 2003 at 17:07:12 PT
Buchanan and Press†
Source: MSNBC †

BUCHANAN: And are our Canadian neighbors going to pot, I mean marijuana? Weíll debate but first letís go to the MSNBC headlines with Christy Musumeci.    BUCHANAN: I guess we start off here with our Jean Chretien. Do we have him here? No, we do not, OK.    PRESS: We do.
BUCHANAN: OK, letís start off. Folks hereís the prime minister of Canada whoís going to introduce our subject tonight. Letís listen.    (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)    JEAN CHRETIEN, CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER: We will soon introduce legislation to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana. Donít start to smoke right away.    (END VIDEO CLIP)    BUCHANAN: Thatís Prime Minister Jean Chretien, our northern neighbor.    PRESS: Canít you wait for the legislation to pass.    BUCHANAN: We introduced our subject and what theyíre doing in Canada folks is decriminalizing marijuana, which means you can smoke it without facing any legal penalties and thereís real concern this side of the border that it may be coming down here big time.    Our guests are Dr. Andrea Barthwell whoís in the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, and also Keith Stroup, the founder and president of NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. You want to knock that cigarette out over there, Keith?    KEITH STROUP, NAT. ORG. FOR REFORM OF MARIJUANA LAWS: You caught me.    PRESS: We call those joints, Pat.    BUCHANAN: All right, look, Keith-I know-we know what we mean. We know where you stand. Weíve argued with you for years. But as a practical matter you havenít been able to convince the country to decriminalize and doesnít the United States have a right to virtually tighten up its border much more dramatically?    Because, look, if itís going to be decriminalized in Canada, I think thereís going to be more and more of that stuff pouring into the United States of America, and quite frankly a majority of Americans donít want it. They think itís a killer drug for too many kids, causes accidents, and destroys lives.    Let me correct you on the first premise that American donít want that. According to the latest Times/CNN poll, 72 percent of the American public say a fine only for marijuana smoking, no arrest, no jail, no criminal record. Thatís precisely what Canada is proposing to do.    And, by the way, in the European Union, I think there are 21 countries the last time I checked. They keep adding them. Only four countries still arrest marijuana smokers. So, if decriminalizing marijuana causes such a problem why havenít we seen it in Mississippi, or North Carolina, or Maine, or Minnesota, or Ohio, or Colorado, or all the other states in the U.S. where they have the exact same policy? Thatís just a bogus allegation.    PRESS: I want to ask you, Dr. Barthell, thanks for coming in tonight, on that point. Pat, the sky is always falling when you talk marijuana with Pat Buchanan but realistically this is going to have a zero impact in the United States, isnít it, as Keith said? Many states have sort of similar laws and also we donít get our stuff from Canada. You can get better stuff, believe me, from Hawaii, northern California, Mexico.    BUCHANAN: San Francisco. Tell us where in San Francisco, Bill.    PRESS: I could take you to a couple of plantations.    DR. ANDREA BARTHWELL, W.H. OFFICE OF DRUG CONTROL POLICY: A lot of our stuff comes from Canada and weíre afraid that more will when this happens. We know that drug availability is directly linked to experimentation. This is not an issue of a few 35-year-olds who are living in their motherís basement still smoking marijuana.    This is an issue of youth drug use and of pediatric illness thatís initiated between nine and 14, and we know that a kid who initiates marijuana use before the age of 17 is nine times more likely across their life to become an addict.    BUCHANAN: Let me just first, I want (unintelligible). When I was out in Iowa campaigning everybody was saying, you know, this is a harmless thing. People use it. So what?    STROUP: Sure.    BUCHANAN: I went to one of these places, these little kid centers where they had all the kids, you know, 2-year-old tots of mothers who had used drugs, were on use, and I was told that five percent of the children born in Iowa are born with permanent damage from drug use by their mothers. And so, I mean...    STROUP: But, Pat...    BUCHANAN: Keith this is not a joke. As the doctor says, I mean you know we laugh about it and we kid about it and potheads but itís destroying lives, isnít it?    STROUP: Whoa, whoa, whoa. No, the allegation is serious but there is no foundation to it. Thereís no problem with mothers who have children if they smoke marijuana. Thereís no smaller birth weight. Itís not like alcohol, so letís back off that. Also, Dr. Barthwell, I have...    BARTHWELL: (Unintelligible).    STROUP: I have to (unintelligible) here. There have been about five studies done by the U.S. government to try to measure drug use patterns in states that have stopped arresting smokers in this country, just what Canadaís talking about doing, compared to their neighbor states where they still arrest smokers. Thereís not one iota of difference. Thereís not any increase in usage. So, itís about time you guys quit doing that sky is falling stuff.    BARTHWELL: The evidence worldwide is compelling. Two times the use among youth in Alaska when they decriminalized. It was switched back when parents and community coalitions got organized.    STROUP: It wasnít switched back by the way.    BARTHWELL: Three times more use among 18 to 25-year-olds in the Netherlands when they opened up the coffee houses.    STROUP: But still half of the use in this country.    BARTHWELL: And four times the rate of addiction for crack and cocaine use in twin pairs when the twins initiate during adolescence. The evidence is compelling worldwide. No sensible, reasonable, responsible adult wants more drugs available.    PRESS: But wait a minute doctor. I have to tell you for most of my adult life since I smoked my first joint, which Iíll readily admit, Iíve heard this bogus argument that trying marijuana or experimenting with marijuana is going to lead to serious drug use. I mean 30, 40 years later, arenít you finally just willing to admit youíre wrong?    BARTHWELL: No, no. The evidence is even more compelling. Back when NORMAL really got its start there was an increase in the rates of initiation and use among youth and itís been a serious commitment on the part of responsible...    (CROSSTALK)    STROUP: Wait a minute, 50 percent of all high school seniors have smoked marijuana under your program.    PRESS: Let her respond.    STROUP: Iím sorry, Pat.    BUCHANAN: Let me ask you this. Look, I mean youíve been-youíve argued the case. Youíve done it for 20 years or so. Youíve been on television and stuff but you really have not persuaded the American people and doesnít it stand to reason.    STROUP: Oh.    BUCHANAN: Just like, look, I didnít-you know I didnít use drugs but we started drinking beer when we were 14, 15 years old, and youíre right into hard liquor when youíre 16 years old. It is an introduction, is it not? Is not marijuana an introduction to a drug culture which is utterly ruinous for young people?    STROUP: No.    BUCHANAN: No?    STROUP: The first drug used by almost every American is either alcohol or tobacco and they actually use it when theyíre underage so itís illegal, but nobody ever claims alcohol and tobacco lead to crack cocaine, so why is it you claim marijuana does?    BARTHWELL: Before I came into this office I was a doctor in Chicago. I saw hundreds of thousands of addicts and I interviewed many of them. I only met three people in my career who had started with something other than marijuana. These are people going into methadone treatment programs, in to residential treatment for crack cocaine. This is...    STROUP: Doctor, we donít usually base our drug policies on those who fail. We usually base them on something more powerful than that.    BARTHWELL: We base our drug policies today on the science.    STROUP: Well, you base your drug policies on prohibition.    BARTHWELL: We base our policies on science.    PRESS: But hereís the thing if I just-almost out of time. Hereís the key thing. By doing what theyíre doing in Canada, theyíre saying weíll write basically a parking ticket if we find you with a...    STROUP: Yes.    PRESS: ...small amount of marijuana thatís not enough to sell. Arenít you really freeing up the courts, freeing up the police departments, freeing up the prisons for more serious crime and getting cops on what they ought to be doing?    BARTHWELL: Fewer than one percent of people in jails and prisons are there because of marijuana use as their most serious crime.    PRESS: However...    BARTHWELL: And the drug courts have been a terrific movement in this country to free up the courts. Weíre talking about responsible policy...    STROUP: Doctor...    BARTHWELL: ...to enable people to get into treatment to deal with this.    PRESS: Quick last word.    STROUP: All right. Youíre saying only a few marijuana smokers end up in prison. What weíre saying is 724,000 Americans were arrested last year for smoking marijuana, something which myself and tens of millions of Americans do responsibly. Stop it.    PRESS: All right, big debate, great debate. Thank you both for coming in, Dr. Barthwell, Keith Stroup.Snipped:Complete Show Transcripts: http://www.msnbc.com/news/908487.asp?cp1=1Source: MSNBC (US Web)Program: Buchanan and PressHosts: Bill Press and Pat BuchananShow Date: May 1, 2003Copyright: 2003 MSNBCContact: buchananandpress msnbc.com Website: http://www.msnbc.com/news/BUCHANANPRESS_Front.aspRelated Articles & Web Site:NORMLhttp://www.norml.org/Commentary: Canada Revisiting Marijuana http://cannabisnews.com/news/thread16120.shtmlChretien To Propose Bill on Marijuanahttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread16116.shtmlChrťtien Ready To Ease Pot Possession Law http://cannabisnews.com/news/thread16113.shtmlPM Renews Promise To Ease Pot Possession Laws http://cannabisnews.com/news/thread16108.shtml 

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Comment #11 posted by FoM on May 03, 2003 at 10:26:20 PT
Celaya 
I love a message board system for the reasons you said. I never thought why I liked commenting like this but you can do other things and think about a response and you don't have that ability with a live chat. I get tired of typing in a chat. I'm not a fast typer and my thoughts are gone before I even get it typed. We talk and laugh here on CNews so posting here is fine. 
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Comment #10 posted by The GCW on May 03, 2003 at 06:11:10 PT
Stroup's doin' it.
And showing everyone else how...It still seems elementary that if We stop prohibitionists from refering to cannabis as "drug", We expose a lot and We force people to mentally separate the plant from the drug.Cannabis is plant, herb, medicine, green seed bearing plant, kaneh bosm, sweet smelling incense, and many things, but it is not mentioned as drug in the Bible.They spew out the word drug and put H, crack and other bad juju in the same common denominator as cannabis which is UNTRUE & INNACURATE. Marijuana & drug were picked by prohibitionists for the negative connotation they deliver, period. The pro should be disallowed to refer to cannabis as drug, as it is of Our Creator the Ecologician, it is pure and clean. None of the other substances thought of in the "drug" catagory, are not pure and clean.We don't refer to cig and booze addicts as drug addicts and those substances are man made as they are processed.So.  Point out to BUCHANAN: if America wants to cage drug users, that is a different point, on decriminalizing cannabis in Cannada, We are talking about ending the practice of caging and criminalizing people that wish to use a plant, NOT A DRUG. 
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Comment #9 posted by Celaya on May 03, 2003 at 00:13:10 PT
FoM
Thanks for the link! I've bookmarked it. I'm generally more comfortable with message boards though. They give you time to think. Plus, lots of family distractions. I'm about pooped out for tonight. I'll look for you tomorrow. BTW, I still post at the NYT Forum, but under the name, john.thomas.Great to see you too! Later...
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Comment #8 posted by FoM on May 02, 2003 at 23:57:45 PT
Celaya
That is great finishing your CD and keeping up the good fight. We have a chat room. Here's the link. http://www.cannabisnews.com/chat/If you want to talk just say so and we can chat away! I am done for the day. I'm tired. Some of my most memorable talks were back on the Political Board. It really is good to see you!
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Comment #7 posted by Celaya on May 02, 2003 at 23:44:14 PT
FoM
Yes, indeed. Life is for learning! The Internet is such a huge part of life, it's hard to imagine it was new just a few years ago! - No. I won't be able to attend a march tomorrow. I now live so far out in the sticks, I'm a hard days drive from any march site. There in spirit, though!Yes. I just finished my first CD of my songs! It only took me 30 years! It's got "What Have They Done?", some of my tunes going back to the early eighties, and a tribute to Canada, called "Green Grow the Flowers." I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it, except send it to friends. Not much call for new, 50-year-old rock stars 8^) It feels good to have it done for posterity, though. --- No such thing as too many questions among friends! -- Yes, that board was a great one. And you taught me to perservere! Is there a particular spot here where you like to converse now?
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on May 02, 2003 at 23:15:43 PT
Celaya
I was just looking at some of our old post on Cann.com. We've learned a lot along the way haven't we? Are you going to a March tomorrow? Are you still doing music? I know I ask too many questions but we had really good times on the political board years ago. You taught me to think. Thanks for understanding about our cyber gremlins. Oh they can be so annoying! LOL!
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Comment #5 posted by Celaya on May 02, 2003 at 23:05:13 PT
FoM
Thanks! It's great to see you're going stronger than ever! No problem on the registration thing. The cyber god loves to send us these little glitches.
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on May 02, 2003 at 22:57:23 PT
Celaya
It sure is good to see you! I'm sorry about the registration problem. Matt contacted me and I told him I had no idea why you couldn't post. I remember the frog in the water you told me about a few years back to this day.
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Comment #3 posted by Celaya on May 02, 2003 at 22:54:26 PT
Stroup by a knockout!
Thanks for the transcript! I saw (and recorded) the show, but it's great to have the words in print!Stroup chewed up the lies and spat them out! - Bearding the lion in his own den!CONGRATULATIONS KEITH!
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on May 02, 2003 at 21:55:33 PT
i420
They never give a person enough time to make a point in the USA. I watched Pot-TV and the news lady that interviewed David Malmo-Levine took time and really asked questions and gave him the time to answer before she asked another question. That is how it should be but here it doesn't happen that way. It keeps the guest on edge and can break their train of thought so the public doesn't have a chance to get it. That's sad.
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Comment #1 posted by i420 on May 02, 2003 at 21:06:47 PT
YaYaYa
Big debate , great debate???? This was a joke and Buchanon was out of bounds when he said...
BUCHANAN: We introduced our subject and what theyíre doing in Canada folks is decriminalizing marijuana, which means you can smoke it without facing any legal penalties and thereís real concern this side of the border that it may be coming down here big time.
 Shows his stupidity right there. No legal penalties???Since when is a fine not a legal penalty????MORON.And about Bafwell....
BUCHANAN: Let me ask you this. Look, I mean youíve been-youíve argued the case. Youíve done it for 20 years or so. Youíve been on television and stuff but you really have not persuaded the American people and doesnít it stand to reason.Ok when was the last time I read a real article featuring STROUP???
NEVER.
The press ain't printing jack in local papers and most stuff on tv is vague and incomplete coverage and usually aired when most people are at work or in bed asleep.
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