Pubdate: Sun, 26 Jun 2011
Source: Tribune Review (Pittsburgh, PA)
Copyright: 2011 Tribune-Review Publishing Co.


It's a sad commentary on the disconnect between politics and common
sense that only now, 40 years since President Nixon declared war on
marijuana, have members of Congress summoned the brain matter to
propose ending the colossal failure known as federal marijuana

A bill introduced by Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., and Rep. Ron Paul,
R-Texas, would let states legalize, regulate and tax marijuana,
limiting Washington's role to cross-border and interstate smuggling
enforcement. Passage wouldn't quite bring about the flat-out
legalization we favor but it would be a huge step in the right direction.

The bill wouldn't just save taxpayers billions of dollars, deprive
organized crime of financial incentives that fuel violence, unleash
new state revenue streams and spare countless law-abiding Americans
criminal records for using a substance less harmful than legal
alcohol. It would curb Washington's intrusiveness, too.

Will enough members of Congress summon the courage to do the right
thing and pass the bill? Or will too many lack the backbone to buck
discredited moralizers and propagandists, preventing even a floor vote?

Congress must not waste this opportunity to rectify the costly,
destructive mistake that is federal marijuana prohibition.
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MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.