Pubdate: Wed, 30 Sep 2009
Source: Daily Forty-Niner (Cal State Long Beach, CA Edu)
Copyright: 2009 Daily Forty-Niner
Author: Robert Sharpe


The drug war (Sept. 17 Daily 49er) is largely a war on marijuana
smokers. Last year there were 847,863 marijuana arrests in the U.S.,
almost 90 percent for simple possession. At a time when state and
local governments are laying off police, firefighters and teachers,
this country continues to spend scarce public resources criminalizing
Americans who prefer marijuana to martinis.

The end result of this ongoing culture war is not necessarily lower
rates of use. The U.S. has higher rates of marijuana use than the
Netherlands, where marijuana is legally available. An admitted former
pot smoker, President Barack Obama, has thus far maintained the status
quo rather than pursue change. Would Obama be in the White House if he
had been convicted of a marijuana offense in his youth?

Marijuana decriminalization is a long overdue step in the right
direction. Students who want to help end the intergenerational culture
war, otherwise known as the war, on some drugs should contact Students
for Sensible Drug Policy at

Robert Sharpe, Policy Analyst

Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, D.C. 
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