Pubdate: Thu, 26 Aug 1999
Source: Bellingham Herald (WA)
Copyright: 1999 Bellingham Herald
Contact:  P.O. Box 1277, Bellingham, WA 98227
Fax: (360) 647-9260
Author: Tyree Callahan
Note: Details on Initiative 229 are at:

The late Carl Sagan, a gifted communicator and one of the 20th
century's most insightful scientific writers, was an avid Marijuana
user ("Sagan credits marijuana for providing inspiration," August 22

Sagan, responsible for some of the most influential scientific
writing, made the cosmos accessible, conceivable and wonderful for the
masses. If anyone were to go tramping about for proof that marijuana
decreases motivation or stunts the intellect, they would not find it
in the life of Carl Sagan. The sole exception being the Kansas school
board that recently declared millions of years of human evolution
irrelevant to education, and who will now triumphantly declare, "See!
It's no wonder he had such warped ideas on evolution!"

With hundreds of scientific papers and numerous books to his credit,
including the Pulitzer Prize winning study on the evolution of the
human brain "The Dragons of Eden," Dr. Sagan was a wellspring of
knowledge and creative insight.

If Initiative 229 (a ballot measure to legalize and regulate the sale
of marijuana in Washington State) were to acquire enough signatures
and pass the November 2000 General Election, rigorous and objective
scientific studies can be legitimized to further our own understanding
of this beneficial plant.

Tyree Callahan
Bellingham, Washington
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