Pubdate: Tue, 13 Feb 2001
Source: Rolling Stone (US)
Copyright: 2001 Straight Arrow Publishers Company, L.P.
Contact:  1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104-0298
Fax: (212) 767-8214
Forum:  Kirk Muse, Norbert A. Nasuta, Joshua Havig, Tim Hinterberger


HOW REFRESHING TO READ BILL Clinton's views on marijuana! Mr. President, if
only you would have had the balls to be so forthcoming the last eight years,
we would have made some very meaningful steps toward the reform of our
archaic laws. Better late than never. Thank you.

NORBERT A. NASUTA Seaside, Oregon

NOT TO TAKE AWAY FROM THE BURSTing integrity of the Bill Clinton interview,
but I was morbidly surprised to see a foolishly hypocritical statement by
our president concerning America's everraging war on drugs. I would like to
know how he can say, "Possession of small amounts of marijuana has been
decriminalized in some states, and should be," when his appointed drug czar,
Barry McCaffrey, has only escalated the intensity of the Drug War, turning
good, everyday citizens into notorious criminals and wasting
incomprehensible amounts of lives and money. When can we get a president who
will do the commendable thing from the start? Turn the War on Drugs into a
War on Crack, stopping the rape and violation of our nation's peaceful
cannabis enthusiasts.

JOSHUA HAVIG Tempe, Arizona

THE FULL STORY OF THE ALASKA marijuana-legalization initiative that appeared
on November's ballot [RS 858/859] is far more complex and promising than you
reported. This ballot measure sought to remove all state prohibitions
against the personal, medicinal and industrial use of hemp, but it did not
stop there. Additional provisions would have banned employment-related
testing, prevented Alaska law-enforcement officers from assisting federal
marijuana investigations, granted amnesty to persons currently imprisoned
for state marijuana offenses, erased the records of all persons ever
arrested on state marijuana charges and established a commission to consider
restitution for those who had been prosecuted on marijuana charges. These
issues led to the measure's defeat. Even its opponents generally agreed that
adults should not be punished for using marijuana in their homes. The fact
that nearly forty-one percent did vote to reject the war on hemp and to free
its prisoners must be taken as a substantial victory. The streamlined
hemp-legalization measure that will appear on the Alaska ballot two years
from now cannot fail

TIM HINTERBERGER Anchorage, Alaska

ONE DEFINITION OF INSANITY IS doing the same thing over and over and
expecting a different result each time. It is also a good definition of
stupidity. Our nation's drug policy for the past eighty-five years has been
both insane and stupid. The voters of California and other states are
saying: Let's do something different.

KIRK MUSE Vancouver, Washington
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