Pubdate: Tue, 31 May 2005
Source: Jakarta Post (Indonesia)
Copyright: The Jakarta Post
Author: Melody Kemp
Bookmark: (Schapelle Corby)


I have been ruminating on the Corby case for weeks, like an old cow,
jaws firmly chewing; the flavor of it troubling me, and this is why.

I lived in Bali for many years. Taking marijuana to Bali was like
taking carved cats to Bali or batik to Java ... why would you as there
is so much there? A lot of young tourists go to Bali to get a stash,
hang out, smoke and watch the sunsets, and maybe get laid after a
night at a club.

Corby had been to Bali before, so she would know that. The next thing
is that she is a good working class girl . her mum and dad are larger
mulut keras (stiff upper lips) types, found roaming the outer suburbs.
The sort of money that it would take to buy a bag of ganja that big
would not be under her mattress. Most working class Australians
struggle to survive, much less to stack ganja on a plane.

Her job as a beautician in Australia puts her in the struggling
classes, her trip to Bali exhausting her bank account. A bag that size
would have cost thousands. The tiny amount I used to control radiation
induced nausea, when conventional medicine failed, costs US$50 and
that was enough to fill a tablespoon.

Sure she could have borrowed money, but see above as to why that would
have been a silly thing to do. That too doesn't make sense.

Remember ganja started on its road to illegality when the U.S. banned
it so that Indian fiber hemp would not get into the U.S. market. The
U.S. was competing with India for the world's cotton trade. It's far
less toxic than tobacco which is one of the few drugs that kills its
subjects if used as prescribed. Marijuana does not do that.

Lets hope that rationality and not muscle-flexing prevails. When men
are killing each other in Iraq (and in Grogol, Jakarta, and Aceh) and
getting away with it, it is also irrational that a woman gets death or
even life for a set-up that involves pot plants.

Melody Kemp, Vientiane, Laos 
- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard Lake