Pubdate: Fri, 05 Oct 2007
Source: Idaho Mountain Express (ID)
Copyright: 2007 Express Publishing, Inc
Author: Robert Sharpe


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 U.S. than any European country, yet America
is one of the few Western countries that punishes citizens who prefer
marijuana to martinis.

Unlike alcohol, marijuana has never been shown to cause an overdose
death, nor does it share the addictive properties of tobacco. 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 confusing drug prohibition's collateral damage
with a relatively harmless plant. The big losers are the taxpayers who
have been deluded into believing big government is the appropriate
response to non-traditional consensual vices.

The results of a comparative study of European and U.S. rates of drug
use can be found at:

United Nations stats:

Robert Sharpe

Common Sense for Drug Policy,

Washington, D.C.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Derek