Pubdate: Sun, 10 Mar 2002
Source: Times Argus (VT)
Copyright: 2002 Times Argus
Author: Joel Williams


Congratulations to the Vermont House Judiciary Committee for its 
compassionate vote on the Medical Marijuana bill.

Representative Carl Haas, R-Rutland has been quoted as being opposed to 
medical marijuana use. That is no surprise, as he is part of the Rutland 
contingency, continually pushing "hate bills" which double prison rates for 
drug users. That archaic belief will never slow the flow or use of drugs. 
Haas continues to support bills designed to clog the courts, build new 
jails and lock up more Vermonters because he feels they don't benefit from 
the medicinal properties of marijuana.

His quote in Vermont daily papers March 2 was a bit disingenuous, 
profoundly contradicting and very revealing. Haas wants us to believe 
police are not arresting sick people for using marijuana. Haas's quote: 
"Not one person who came in to testify in front of us ... has ever heard of 
a person who's in need of marijuana for medical usage, and could not get it 
... or who's ever been arrested," Haas said. "If the problem doesn't exist, 
why are we making a law?"

Haas intimates that medical marijuana users can get their medicine through 
the black market where quality and safety is questionable, price is 
outrageous and criminal activity prevails. Representative Haas is really 
suggesting that the sick should continue to be gouged for their medicine, 
take a chance on being arrested and incarcerated in our overcrowded jails, 
all at the tax payers' expense. Remember, he tried to increase the jail 
sentence for medical marijuana users with H-214 last year. Approximately 
700,000 arrests nation wide last year for marijuana and he is suggesting 
not one of the individuals arrested were using marijuana medicinally? Carl 
Haas and his narrow-minded colleagues continue with the 60-plus years of 
prejudice and ignorance by outlawing an herb that has been used medicinally 
for over 2000 years.

Vermont state government doesn't need that kind of bigotry. We need 
intelligent representation from those who will research the truth prior to 
making ignorant statements of monumental proportions. Vote Libertarian. 
Compassion not harm. Cures not Wars.


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MAP posted-by: Keith Brilhart