Americans Compromise On Pot

Americans Compromise On Pot
Posted by CN Staff on September 18, 2007 at 06:54:04 PT
By Michael Booth, Denver Post Staff Writer
Source: Denver Post
Colorado -- Take one swift glance at a U.S. map coded to reflect the widely varying marijuana laws in each state, and drug policy seems to range from irrational to incoherent. But dig into the details of public opinion, user behavior and police enforcement, and a more lucid picture of American attitudes comes into focus: People have learned to live with pot, up to a fine point.
As Denver ponders yet another ballot measure on marijuana Nov. 6 - to make pursuit of small amounts of pot the "lowest law-enforcement priority" - many communities may already have reached a complicated compromise that reflects the wisdom of research and the consistency of survey results. In a growing number of states and large cities, possessing and smoking a little pot is either a minor offense or no crime at all, while growing or distributing the drug still gets you in big trouble. Growing or using pot for medicinal purposes is widely accepted, while police and defense attorneys argue the details of what constitutes therapeutic amounts. Almost no one wants kids to have free access to marijuana, while the stigma of adult use drops to the level of a speeding ticket. Most voters want police to stop arresting the casual pot smoker, but they also don't yet want the state to sanction a legalized marijuana industry, in the manner of alcohol or tobacco. In the more progressive states, such as Colorado, voters need to ask themselves "why the current state law is insufficient," said Rosalie Pacula, co-director of the RAND Drug Policy Research Center in California, whose work is respected by both sides of the marijuana debate. "Making it a low priority is already being done. So who is this about?" It's about forcing the police and public officials to heed previous public votes decriminalizing pot and making the community acknowledge that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol, argues SAFER, the group behind the current ballot initiative. "Some laws are just not feasible anymore," said Mason Tvert, SAFER's leader. "Marijuana-possession laws are at the top of that list."  Snipped:Complete Article: Denver Post (CO)Author: Michael Booth, Denver Post Staff WriterPublished: September 18, 2007 Copyright: 2007 The Denver Post CorpWebsite: openforum Safer Choice -- Cannabis Archives
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on September 18, 2007 at 11:32:32 PT
Press Release: Treating Yourself Magazine 
Treating Yourself Magazine Issue #9 Hits News StandsSeptember 18, 2007
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Comment #1 posted by OverwhelmSam on September 18, 2007 at 07:07:59 PT
Local Law Enforcement Addicted to Fed's Money
That's why law suits aqainst city, county and state law enforcement agencies is effective at detering marijuana law enforcement attiudes. If enough law suits are filed against these entities, the money receoved from the feds for drug enforcement will pale in comparison. Sue on any and every technicality involving arrest for simple possession and use of marijuana.
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