We're working on the third Letter to Legislators. The second will be mailed Sept. 17. You can see the first two letters here.
I wanted to see what the current arguments are against legalizing cannabis. I queried on Google, "why should pot be illegal." I got…
"Legalized gambling has not reduced illegal gambling in the United States; rather, it has increased it. This is particularly evident in sports gambling, most of which is illegal. Legal gambling is taxed and regulated and illegal gambling is not. Legal gambling sets the stage for illegal gambling just the way legal marijuana would set the stage for illegal marijuana trafficking."
The author of that and several other equally…uhhhh…., …well…, stupid as a two-day-old fucking rock arguments is
Dr. Robert L. DuPont
Partner, Bensinger DuPont and Associates
Ex-President, Institute for Behavior and Health
Ex-Director, National Institute on Drug Abuse
He almost certainly is related to the DuPonts who patented Nylon the same year the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act was passed. The DuPonts who banked at the Mellon Bank of Pittsburgh. Headed by Andrew Mellon, Secretary of the Treasury. The Treasury Dept. administered the War on Cannabis, just as it currently administers The War On People Who Use The Stuff The Government Doesn't Want You to Try To Feel Better With. Read more about the DuPonts and Mellon here.
Here's another of DuPont's gems: "The gambling precedent suggests strongly that illegal drug suppliers would thrive by selling more potent marijuana products outside of the legal channels that would be taxed and otherwise restricted. If marijuana were legalized, the only way to eliminate its illegal trade, which is modest in comparison to that of cocaine, would be to sell marijuana untaxed and unregulated to any willing buyer."
"Okay," I thought. "This is at the top of the results on the search, but this guy might not really be clearly expressing the thoughts of all those who love to put people in jail for nothing." I looked at some other sites that came up in the search (Try it! "why should pot be illegal") and I soon discovered that DuPont is as good as it gets. Really, take a search engine ride on a track of…, well, incredible ignorance, to be kind.
So, I think we'll propose what we believe is the best solution to the useless carnage of weed arrests, and we'll ask the legislators and candidates thereto to send us their thoughts on the subject. There will be several fora on which our arguments and the arguments of the Prohibitionists can be discussed. Provided we get any response.
The first forum is this newsletter, 2500 people who have not yet Unsubscribed.
Another is the Decorum Forum blog. A steady stream of about 79 people look at it every day.
A third is the SoDakNORML Facebook page.
Fourth, the SoDakNORML website.
So, keeping in mind that the following letter will be mailed after we hear from you as to possible improvements, the third Letter to Legislators might go something like this:
Sept. 24, 2012
Hello Senator Grandview;
SoDakNORML believes that putting people in jail for using, having possession of, or selling cannabis is wrong. We'd like to hear your views. We invite you to email us at email@example.com to express whether or not you agree with us and why.
Jailing people for using cannabis is jailing people for trying to feel better. It makes no sense to us. Does it make sense to you? Why?
Cannabis is not dangerous. There is no record of a death from overdose. The effects of cannabis include a mild euphoria, kind of a a heightened sense of well-being one might compare to the feeling a few minutes after the second glass of wine, and some brief minimal loss of certain motor skills and concentration ability. In rare cases, short-lived psychotic experiences have resulted. People who experience psychosis often choose not to use cannabis again. If someone breaks a law wherein someone is injured, then that law should be enforced. Using cannabis just does not fit that characterization.
Using law enforcement and court resources to process a few thousand cases of pot possession per year in South Dakota doesn't appear to us to be a fiscally responsible approach to something that is not really even a problem.
The therapeutic benefits of cannabis for a wide range of medical conditions in a wide range of patients are well established. In 1988, Francis L. Young, an administrative law judge for the DEA wrote, "Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious for the DEA to continue to stand between those sufferers and the benefits of this substance in light of the evidence in this record."
The DEA continues to be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious.
SoDakNORML would like to know why you believe possession, use or sale of cannabis should remain illegal, if you do. We'd also like to know if you agree with us that it shouldn't remain illegal, or maybe you think some other way is best. We have proposed a solution. We'd like to hear yours, given that current policy is creating, rather than alleviating, a problem.
Our partial solution to the problems caused by the Prohibition of cannabis: Stop jailing people for using or selling cannabis. We identify The Problem as being the jailing of people for using or selling cannabis.
We invite you to engage with us at the Decorum Forum Blog, the SoDakNORML Facebook page, the SoDakNORML website, or by emailing (or phoning 605-255-4032) us directly.
We would recommend a good website that presents sensible arguments for Prohibition, but we couldn't find one. Maybe you can. Please send your suggestions.
We do recommend this page as a starting place for those who want to see our side of this argument.
We look forward to your reply,
Jesse Grimm, Hot Springs, combat veteran
Dennis Bridenstine, Lead, paraplegic
E. J. GreyBuffalo, Sisseton, degenerative bone disease patient
The cost of this entire campaign will be about $1600. So far we have received about $370.00. Most of the cost of the campaign is in postage stamps. Please send us some money. Your $10-bill is a significant step towards the cost of the campaign.
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