Pubdate: Mon, 25 Feb 2008
Source: Bennington Banner (VT)
Copyright: 2008 by MediaNews Group, Inc.
Author: Laura K. Zink


Vermont state Senator Dick  McCormack of Windsor was quoted in the
Banner regarding  the marijuana bill as saying, "The harm that is done
to  actual people's lives because they're pot smokers is  not done by
pot smoking ... It comes from getting  caught."

That is the same reasoning offered to my husband many  years ago when
he served our community as a law  enforcement officer. Having made an
arrest, the person  charged with a crime told my husband that the only
  crime was in getting caught.

"Getting caught" is oftentimes a consequence for our

"Consequences" was an important part of the D.A.R.E.  (Drug Awareness
Resistance Education) curriculum, which  my husband taught to our
county's children for over 11  years. Marijuana is a drug with

Persons caught with up to two ounces of marijuana could  be given six
months in jail and up to a $1,000 fine,  according to current Vermont
law. Such a judicial  consequence for marijuana use just might prevent
a  person from proceeding further down the road of illegal  drug use.

The Banner also reported that Rutland's Senator Hull  Maynard noted
that in his county, especially in Rutland  City, there is a plague of
drug-related violence and other crime. He is quoted as saying, "We
would be better off not passing anything on this subject right now." I
couldn't agree more.

Rutland is already experiencing the consequences of  illegal drug use.
Why should it be encouraged  statewide?


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