Pubdate: Sun, 22 Jun 2003
Source: Tribune Review (Pittsburgh, PA)
Copyright: 2003 Tribune-Review Publishing Co.
Author: Mark Crowley


The War on Drugs caused serious collateral damage last month, reaching far
beyond a few drug users. In late May, the Drug Enforcement Administration
paid a visit to promoters of a concert in Billings, Mont., who were raising
money for a medical-marijuana ballot initiative.

These federal agents told promoters that just one drug violation by just one
attendee would bring the full force of the Illicit Drug Proliferation Act
down on them and their business. The promoters felt they had no choice but
to cancel the event.

The government's message is clear -- political speech about medical
marijuana is now illegal.

What'll be illegal next? Will this administration use this law to stop a
protest rally questioning the war in Iraq?

Will a future administration use this law to stop a pro-gun rally?

The Constitution is now hanging by a thread. Are we that far from seeing
federal agents lobbying, if not outright intimidating, state legislators and
local citizen groups promoting medical marijuana or expanded gun rights?

Let's hope conservatives and liberals in Congress adopt some libertarian
common sense and stop this now. If not, I fear Congress will be all too
eager to authorize "Operation Final Harvest" when Canada decriminalizes drug

Mark Crowley 

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