Pubdate: Wed, 09 Jan 2013
Source: Daily News, The (Newburyport, MA)
Copyright: 2013 Eagle Tribune Publishing Company
Author: Steven S. Epstein


To the editor: Instead of editorializing that the "Legislature should 
put priority on fixing new marijuana law," I would urge the 
Legislature to prioritize replacement of the state's prohibition that 
never should have been with a law that treats the plant and its 
products like any other agricultural commodity, punishing only the 
selling or gifting of marijuana to children. When I say any other 
agricultural commodity think herbs like thyme sold by weight, on 
scales certified accurate by the Sealer of Weights and Measures, and 
subject to the warranty of merchantability. Of course, the profits of 
those engaged in the commerce of cannabis would be subject to income 
taxation and the activities of that commerce take place in a manner 
in accordance with other generally applicable law.

It is fiscally irresponsible, unwise and unreasonable for 
Massachusetts and her municipalities to expend resources on 
attempting to enforce a prohibition that merely provides a price 
support to those willing to risk supplying the demand.

It is also wrong to suppress the cultivation of a plant that was, 
until crony capitalists hijacked our legislatures to eliminate the 
competition, valued for its nutritious seeds, strong fiber, medicinal 
and entheogenic ("generating the divine within") qualities from 
before the dawn of agriculture. A plant scientists discovered in the 
first third of the 20th century could be a green resource in the 
place of fossil carbons and trees. Undoubtedly, prohibitionist will 
rant about the supposed dangers of complying with the Constitution, 
but their "reefer madness" is a delusion.

They may be well intentioned but they reject the self-evident truth 
at the heart of our constitutions that we are all created equal and 
endowed with the right to live our lives as we choose, so long as our 
choices are not the cause of injury to others.

Steven S. Epstein

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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom