Pubdate: Tue, 28 Nov 2000
Source: Otago Daily Times (New Zealand)
Copyright: Allied Press Limited, 2000
Contact:  P.O. Box 181, 52-66 Lower Stuart Street, Dunedin, New Zealand
Author: Jason Baker-Sherman
Note: Headline supplied by newshawk


IVAN HARPER (9.11.00) and his fellow prohibitionists are assuming the moral
high ground in the cannabis debate simply by claiming that they are the
"informed" saviours of our young - which is interesting because the welfare
of my children is precisely why I oppose our Draconian cannabis laws. These
unjust, redundant relics from an authoritarian era protect no-one today
(except some powerful vested interests) while endangering us all. Every
major study commissioned to investigate the "cannabis problem", including
that of the 1998 New Zealand Health Committee, has concluded that cannabis
prohibition is more harmful to society than cannabis use.

Harry Anslinger, hand-picked director of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics
1931-62 and expert witness at the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act hearings,
proclaimed that "if the hideous monster Frankenstein came face to face with
the monster marijuana he would drop dead with fright". His real assignment
was to eliminate a resurgent hemp industry but instead he claimed to protect
a nation's young from a deadly foreign peril. A decade earlier Adolf Hitler
had expressed in Mein Kampf the notion that "the great masses of the people
. . . will more easily fall victims to a big lie than a small one". So it
has proved in the case of cannabis.

Jason Baker-Sherman, Dalmore
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