Pubdate: Fri, 09 Jun 2000
Date: 06/09/2000
Source: Anchorage Daily News (AK)
Author: Keith Kessler

I support the initiative to legalize hemp on the Alaska ballot in
November. The agricultural, economical, medicinal and environmental
benefits of hemp are incredible. It is an annually renewable natural
resource that is capable of providing the overall majority of the
United States' (and the world's) paper and textiles and meeting all of
the world's transportation, industrial and home energy needs, while
simultaneously reducing pollution, rebuilding the soil, and cleaning
the atmosphere.

Our country's founding fathers, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson
and Benjamin Franklin, recognized the importance of this plant. Hemp
was used in U.S. history for covered wagons, medicine, currency, our
sailors' clothing, our ships' sails, our Bibles, our first flag "Old
Glory," and the first draft of the U.S. Declaration of

With the environmental problems we face today, we cannot continue to
ignore the uses of hemp. I urge you to take this initiative seriously
and educate yourself on the benefits of hemp. The alleged harm from
its use pales in comparison to the harm caused from its prohibition.
We should legalize hemp, tax it, and subject it to some age and use
restrictions instead of continuing to jail decent people and pollute
our planet. This November, vote yes for the environment and personal

Keith Kessler,