Pubdate: Wed, 4 Sep 2002
Source: Haleakala Times (HI)
Contact:  2002 Haleakala Times
Author: Robert Sharpe,, Adam
Note: For more on medical cannabis and cannabis eradication in Hawaii go to


RE: ACLU And Drug Policy Forum Condemn Raids On Medical Pot Users, HT

Dear Editor, Why are Big Island police cracking down on local residents who
hold medical marijuana permits? It's certainly an easy way to boost drug
seizure statistics.

I hope Big Island police aren't harassing medical marijuana patients in
order to "send a message" that marijuana use will not be tolerated.

Zero tolerance has done little - other than burden millions of otherwise
law-abiding citizens with criminal records.

The University of Michigan's Monitoring the Future Study reports that
lifetime use of marijuana is higher in the U.S. than any European country
(see link below). Yet America is one of the few Western countries that
wastes resources punishing citizens who prefer marijuana to martinis.

Unlike alcohol, marijuana has never been shown to cause an overdose death,
nor does it share the addictive properties of tobacco.

The short-term health effects of marijuana are inconsequential compared to
the long-term effects of criminal records.

Unfortunately, marijuana represents the counterculture to misguided
reactionaries in Congress intent on legislating their version of morality.

In subsidizing the prejudices of culture warriors the U.S. government is
inadvertently subsidizing organized crime.

The drug war's distortion of immutable laws of supply and demand make an
easily grown weed literally worth its weight in gold. The only clear winners
in the war on some drugs are drug cartels and shameless tough-on-drugs
politicians who've built careers on confusing drug prohibition's collateral
damage with a relatively harmless plant.

The big losers in this battle are the American taxpayers who have been
deluded into believing big government is the appropriate response to
non-traditional consensual vices. The results of a comparative study of
European and U.S. rates of drug use can be found at: .

*MTF is funded by the U.S. government.


Robert Sharpe, M.P.A. Program Officer, Drug Policy Alliance

Washington, DC

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Dear Editors, I applaud the ACLU for standing up for the rights of medical
cannabis patients ("ACLU And Drug Policy Forum Condemn Raids On Medical Pot
Users," Aug 21)

Many of our citizens suffering from debilitating, often terminal diseases
such as cancer and AIDS, benefit greatly from medical cannabis. Take just a
few minutes to talk to one of the patients who use cannabis. Their eyes
filling with tears, they will describe how greatly it has improved their
life, by allowing them to function normally despite debilitating pain, and
stimulating their appetite when other medicines could not.

In many cases, these people only have a few years of life remaining. It is
both wise and compassionate to do everything we can to ensure that these
patients have access to medical cannabis.

Adam Wiggins

Pasadena, CA
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