Pubdate: Tue, 01 Nov 2005
Source: Trinity Tripot (Trinity College, CT Edu)
Copyright: 2005 The Trinity Tripot
Author: Robert Sharpe


To the Editor:

The drug war is in large part a war on marijuana, by far the most 
popular illicit drug.  Marijuana prohibition 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 United States 
than in any European country, yet America is one of the few Western 
countries that uses its criminal justice system to punish citizens 
who prefer marijuana to martinis.  The short-term health effects of 
marijuana are inconsequential compared to the long-term effects of 
criminal records.  Unfortunately, marijuana represents the 
counterculture to many Americans.  In subsidizing the prejudices of 
culture warriors, government is 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 marijuana 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.  Students who want to 
help end the intergenerational culture war, otherwise known as the 
war on some drugs, should contact Students for Sensible Drug Policy 

Robert Sharpe
Policy Analyst
Common Sense for Drug Policy