Pubdate: Fri, 06 Jan 2012
Source: Baltimore Sun (MD)
Copyright: 2012 The Baltimore Sun Company
Author: Charles E. Hilton


Your recent editorial on medical marijuana was yet another attempt to 
frame the legalization debate in terms of public safety, which is 
nothing more than a convenient smoke screen ("Go slow on marijuana," Jan. 3).

If our leaders cared one wit about public safety as it concerns 
drugs, most of the prescription medicines advertised directly to 
consumers would be taken off the shelves.

Marijuana has been studied to death already, not for its medical 
benefits but for its potential harm. And the sole reason for that is 
so the authorities can find a medical reason for its continued illegality.

Given all the time and money and resources that already have been 
spent on this project, if they haven't yet proven that marijuana is 
dangerous they probably never will. Instead, the arguments against 
pot will continue to be anecdotal at best.

When one considers the individual and social costs of alcohol abuse, 
and the dangerous side-effects of most medicines on the market, the 
prejudice against marijuana can be seen for what it really is: a 
remnant of the establishment's battle against the counter-culture of 
the 1960s and '70s.

Nothing is more symbolic of that era than the marijuana leaf and the 
peace sign - both of which are still abhorrent to the ruling classes 
because of what they initially stood for: Peace and brotherhood.

There is little money to be made from that. America still prefers to 
make its money the old fashioned way, by fighting wars.

Charles E. Hilton
- ---
MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom