Pubdate: Sat, 13 May 2006
Source: Daytona Beach News-Journal (FL)
Copyright: 2006 News-Journal Corporation
Note: gives priority to local writers
Author: Robert Sharpe
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal)


Re "FDA's reefer madness: Dismissing medicinal marijuana, with
prejudice," editorial, May 1:

If health outcomes determined drug laws instead of cultural norms,
marijuana would be legal. As policy analyst for Common Sense for Drug
Policy, I know that marijuana can be harmful if abused, but jail cells
are inappropriate as health interventions and ineffective as
deterrents. The first marijuana laws were enacted in response to
Mexican migration during the early 1900s, despite opposition from the
American Medical Association. Dire warnings that marijuana inspires
homicidal rages have been counterproductive at best. White Americans
did not even begin to smoke pot until a government bureaucracy began
funding reefer madness propaganda.

The reefer madness myths have long been discredited, forcing the drug
war gravy train to spend millions of tax dollars on politicized
research, trying to find harm in a relatively harmless plant.
Meanwhile, research that might demonstrate medical marijuana's
efficacy has been consistently blocked by the Food and Drug
Administration. By raiding voter-approved medical marijuana providers
in California, the very same U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration that
claims illicit drug use funds terrorism is forcing cancer and AIDS
patients into the hands of street dealers.


Washington, D.C. 
- ---
MAP posted-by: SHeath(DPF Florida)