Pubdate: Sat, 10 Nov 2007
Source: Tampa Tribune (FL)
Copyright: 2007 The Tribune Co.
Author: Robert Sharpe


Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum just doesn't get it. Indoor
marijuana grow operations are a direct result of marijuana
prohibition. Legitimate farmers do not steal electricity to grow
produce in the basements of rented homes. If legal, growing marijuana
would be less profitable then farming tomatoes.

As it stands, the drug war distorts market forces such that an easily
grown weed is literally worth its weight in gold. For an objective
take on marijuana, look to Canada.

In 2002, the Canadian Senate concluded that marijuana is relatively
harmless, marijuana prohibition contributes to organized crime, and
law enforcement efforts have little impact on patterns of use.

In the words of Senator Pierre Claude Nolin, "Scientific evidence
overwhelmingly indicates that cannabis is substantially less harmful
than alcohol and should be treated not as a criminal issue but as a
social and public health issue."

Robert Sharpe

Washington, D.C.

The writer is a policy analyst for Common Sense for Drug Policy.
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