Pubdate: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
Source: Anchorage Daily News (AK)
Copyright: 2000 The Anchorage Daily News
Author: John Hammelman


Isaac Schapira's June 16 column "99HEMP: Issue's rope, not dope"
criticized the ballot initiative group Free Hemp In Alaska for working
to legalize both industrial hemp and marijuana. Isaac feels that
putting the two issues together causes the same confusion that led to
cannabis prohibition.

The difference is this: In 1937, when racist politicians and greedy
corporations used the new slang term "marijuana" to outlaw the
cannabis plant, the public did not understand that their hemp crop was
being outlawed. Today, Free Hemp In Alaska is honest about all the
different uses of cannabis and feels it should be fully legalized just
as Schapira does. The Green and Libertarian parties support the 99HEMP
initiative (Proposition 5).

One common thread of all 99HEMP supporters is that they recognize that
adults who use marijuana should not be considered criminals. It is
likely that you, reading this, have tried marijuana or know friends or
family members who have. Do you feel that you, or your friends or
family members, should have been fined thousands of dollars and served
time in jail? If not, voting no on Proposition 5 in November would be

John Hammelman

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