Pubdate: Fri, 05 Aug 2011 Source: Chicago Sun-Times (IL) Copyright: 2011 Sun-Times Media, LLC Contact: http://mapinc.org/url/5QwXAJWY Website: http://www.suntimes.com/ Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/81 Author: Ken Sain LONG BATTLE FOR WISE MARIJUANA LAW I applaud Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle and your editorial supporting the decriminalization of marijuana in Cook County. My father, Frank Sain, when he was sheriff of Cook County, championed this effort in 1960. Like today, too many are seeking to keep the prohibition for untenable reasons. He served in the criminal justice system for more than 30 years, beginning as a guard. He became the warden of both the county and city jails before becoming sheriff. He saw firsthand the injustice of treating most cannabis users as criminals and incarcerating them in jails. He also championed the need to take the criminal profits out from cannabis sales by making tolerable limits available through medical and pharmacy authorizations (this alone would reduce the threat of other more serious crimes against the public). One of the biggest problems causing the exploding jail populations in Cook County in the 1950s was that the city passed ordinances imposing fines of up to $5,000 for possession of marijuana, which meant a person would work off the fine by spending more than 2 1/2 years in jail. The jail population doubled. A lot of hardened criminals, who all of us want removed from our streets, don't serve this much time for thier crimes, which threaten the public more. Let's get it straight for once, and do the right thing. Ken Sain Lincolnwood - --- MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.