Pubdate: Sat, 24 Mar 2007
Source: Chicago Sun-Times (IL)
Page: 10
Copyright: 2007 The Sun-Times Co.
Author: Bill O'Reilly
Bookmark: (Opinion)
Bookmark: (Marijuana - Medicinal)
Bookmark: (Decrim/Legalization)


It seemed like a good idea at the time, the Compassionate Use Act of
1996, which allowed Californians to use marijuana with a doctor's
permission to alleviate pain. The act was put on the ballot, and
California voters passed it 56 percent to 44 percent.

The biggest bankroller of the referendum was George Soros, the
secular-progressive billionaire who champions drug legalization. He
pumped about $350,000 into ads promoting the legalization of medical
use of marijuana, according to published reports.

Since the act was passed into law, thousands of pot "clinics" have
opened across the Golden State. In San Francisco, things got so out of
control that Mayor Gavin Newsom, a very liberal guy, had to close many
of the clinics because drug addicts were clustering around them,
causing fear among city residents.

In San Diego, there's another problem. Some high school kids have
found a loophole in the Compassion Act. Incredibly, there is no age
requirement to secure medical marijuana in California, and no physical
examination needed either. So some kids tell a doctor they have a
headache, pay him $150 for a card, and then can buy all the pot they
want. Unbelievable, but true.

Catherine Martin, a school official in San Diego, actually sent
letters to parents in the Grossmont Union School District, warning
that some students are getting the medical marijuana cards and then
selling them to other students. The result: an increasing number of
kids arriving at school stoned. Martin warned parents to supervise
their children.

San Diego District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis told me that some clinics
are even marketing medical marijuana under names such as "Reefer's
Peanut Butter Cup," and "Baby Jane." Cheech and Chong would be proud.

Now, I'm sure George Soros doesn't give a hoot about this, but the
unintended consequence of non-prescription medical marijuana
legalization is that some kids are making an industry out of it. Sure,
pot is available illegally in most places, but now children have a
legal option. Why work at Burger King when you can sell pot cards?

Of course, there is nothing compassionate about kids being
intoxicated. It changes them forever. Once a child alters himself with
chemicals, childhood vanishes. A national study by the Center on
Addiction and Substance Abuse says more teens are in rehab for
marijuana than any other intoxicant, including alcohol.

Society needs to rethink its strategy on intoxicants in general. If
marijuana can help those suffering with debilitating diseases, then
doctors should have the power to prescribe it and licensed pharmacies
should carry it. But storefront clinics run by irresponsible adults
who are aided by corrupt doctors are a joke that only a confirmed
stoner would find funny.

Bottom line: Be careful what you vote for. Compassion can easily turn
into chaos. 
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MAP posted-by: Richard Lake