Let's Get Serious About Marijuana
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Let's Get Serious About Marijuana
Posted by CN Staff on May 27, 2012 at 10:35:15 PT
By Gary Lindstrom, Guest Commentary
Source: Summit Daily News 
Colorado -- It was not long ago that marijuana was a relative non-issue in Colorado. Times sure have changed. These days, it is being talked about everywhere  the Legislature, the media, the water cooler at work, and the dinner table. And rightfully so. It is about time we had a serious discussion about the efficacy of our current marijuana laws and whether it is time for a new approach.Fortunately, there is a measure on this November's ballot that will foster just the conversation we need. Amendment 64 would make marijuana legal for adults 21 and older and replace our current prohibition model with a legal system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol. I fully support the initiative and believe it is a much-needed step forward for Colorado. I arrived at this position over the course of an extensive career in law enforcement and government that provided several insights into the failure of marijuana prohibition.
I served nearly 40 years as a police officer, during which time I became undersheriff and then director of public safety for Summit County. I was also elected Summit County Coroner. I can say with certainty that marijuana's illegal status did not make our citizens and communities the least bit safer. It remained universally available despite all of our efforts to keep it off the street, and I quickly came to realize adult marijuana use was largely unproblematic. Nobody was getting out of control or dying of overdoses, and it was never a factor in violent crimes. In my entire career, I never saw anyone hurt another person or themselves because they were under the influence of marijuana. I certainly cannot say the same thing with respect to alcohol. And quite frankly, dealing with people under the influence of marijuana was a welcome departure from the all too frequent situations in which alcohol was involved. Those who had too much to drink were often aggressive and combative. Those who had consumed marijuana tended to be more passive and congenial.Ironically, most of the problems associated with marijuana stem from the laws prohibiting it. By relegating this popular substance to the underground market we are ceding all control over its production and sale. Not only does this deprive our state and localities of significant and much-needed new tax revenue and job creation; it poses a significant threat to public health and safety. By driving individuals into the underground market to purchase marijuana, we are potentially exposing them to other illegal products they would never encounter in regulated retail stores. More importantly, we are making marijuana much more accessible to teens. Illegal drug dealers do not ask for ID, which is probably why high school students consistently report that marijuana is easier to obtain than alcohol. If we truly want to prevent young people from accessing this product, we need to put it behind the counter where proof of age is required to purchase it and anyone who sells to a minor faces strict legal penalties. This has been an incredibly effective approach to curbing the rate of teen tobacco use, and there is no reason why we should not be applying it to marijuana.As a former state representative and county commissioner, I have seen my fair share of ineffective and wasteful public policies. Our current marijuana laws are right up there with the worst of them. It is time for a smarter and more responsible approach, and Amendment 64 presents just that. I hope you will join me in supporting it and making Colorado a safer, healthier place for all of us.Gary Lindstrom is a former state representative and Summit County Commissioner. Newshawk: The GCWSource: Summit Daily News (CO)Author: Gary Lindstrom, Guest CommentaryPublished: May 27, 2012Copyright: 2012 Summit Daily NewsURL: -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #9 posted by ekim on May 30, 2012 at 07:08:41 PT
David will be on farm radio RFD network Thurs am
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Comment #8 posted by schmeff on May 28, 2012 at 11:25:15 PT
Great, Sensible & Thoughtful Essay
I wish it had appeared in the big Denver newspaper instead of the quite small (circulation-wise) Summit Daily News. :(
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Comment #7 posted by runruff on May 28, 2012 at 11:09:39 PT
Termites and tyranny.
We have this thing going on we call our lives. Our lives take a lot of tending to. We must be both vigilant and compassionate. Self providers and charitable. we must console and nurture our children while seeing to the health, welfare and education of others. A successful society takes effort and care and most of our time.Tyranny however, like termites undermining the foundation of our homes and our lives, never sleeps. Never thinks of anything else. spends every waking hour trying to take and control more and more. Termites like tyranny has no conscience or plan other than to continue their mindless consumption of wealth and lives.
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Comment #6 posted by museman on May 28, 2012 at 09:48:59 PT
Why is it so hard to see?
"Without Satan and ignorant leaders, there would be no cannabis prohibition."Because "science" or rather most 'scientists' and 'reality experts' say that there 'is no satan, and there is no god.'They have successfully recreated the language, values, and systems in their own image of fear, force, lies, deception, and control.They have thrown over the natural, Creator-Made systems for their plastic-fantastic inventions -and I'm not talking about tools and toys, I'm talking about beliefs and ideologies. However many of the 'tools and toys' reflect the corrupted mentalities that rule this planet.The violation of our rights as citizens of the constitutionally governed country has all but rendered the Bill of Rights Amendments null and void.Yet the mainstream peasants continue to drive their credit-owned vehicles, leave their lights on, and most of all, continue to support their own slavery on a daily basis by believing in the power of money, instead of the power of Providence.Everything we ever needed was supplied on that day that our Creator made it all -for all life, but we have some special considerations (like intelligence that is hardly used)- and yet we continue to, and believe it is somehow 'right and correct,' to allow the handful of wealth-mongers to steal Providence and then make us be their slaves to get any of it!The day is coming soon when many people will wake up one morning and realize they have wasted their life and time pursuing that carrot on a stick that the rulers offer as 'the american dream' (for instance) and they will just stop.When enough courageous people decide to stop, the corruption will die for lack of fodder to feed on.And its about belief, perception, and attitude. People have much more faith in the power of money and its systems, than they have in the essence of their own beings. They falsely believe that spending an entire life in service to the 1% is somehow the 'right and honorable thing to do.' That belief has been around a while, fostered by kings and priests, and it is quite embedded in our collective psyche, but it is an error, and as long as the masses keep believing in that instead of Creation (as a fact of existence, not a theory or philosophy) the powers will continue to rule.At least until the clock runs down.And if no one has noticed, the ticking is getting louder near the end.LEGALIZE FREEDOM
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Comment #5 posted by The GCW on May 27, 2012 at 21:09:16 PT
John Tyler,
As you know, government doesn't want to allow any research because any and all research will compromise war. How long can this government exterminate what God created and already stated is good? The Ecologician already did the studies; He made it good.-0-Caging responsible adults for using and cultivating the relatively safe green plant is luciferous and vulgar. Cannabis prohibition and extermination is the devil law. Without Satan and ignorant leaders, there would be no cannabis prohibition. -0-LEO: You're under arrest.Mr. Citizen: What did I do?LEO: You were breathing well and have a low cancer risk...
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Comment #4 posted by John Tyler on May 27, 2012 at 20:46:44 PT
it's natural
This is a link to an article just now posted at
Studies show that cannabis users have a greater lung capacity and less cancer. is no surprise to, us but it is nice to be validated by another source, the natural people that are into natural products and organic foods.
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Comment #3 posted by ekim on May 27, 2012 at 19:56:04 PT
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Comment #2 posted by runruff on May 27, 2012 at 11:18:31 PT
I say put up or shut up!
Show me the bodies. Either show me the bodies and the harm created by this plant or shut he puck up!We cannot be governed by laws based on there might be a boogieman under the bed. We cannot be governed by laws based on wives tales.We cannot be kept from our choices based on the preferences of others.We cannot be kept form our choices based on the ignorance of a few.We cannot be kept from our choices because it erodes the profit margin of some other industry.We cannot be kept from making our own choices based on the personal ambition of another.I will not be kept from making my own choices, period!This is Memorial Day Week-end, a celebration of those who fought and died for or rights and freedoms not a celebration of those who seek to undermine and destroy them.
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Comment #1 posted by runruff on May 27, 2012 at 10:47:04 PT
1993; News commentator to Drug Czar Bennett
"Don't you think it is time for a real discussion about marijuana"?Bennett, "Marijuana is bad, marijuana is illegal, end of discussion"!
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