cannabisnews.com: Voice of Reason on Prohibition
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Voice of Reason on Prohibition
Posted by CN Staff on September 22, 2009 at 08:52:11 PT
Editorial
Source: Appeal-Democrat
USA -- When this page and Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts can find common ground on an issue, it's likely an issue that has broad popular appeal. That's the situation with legislation Frank introduced this summer that would essentially decriminalize small amounts of marijuana for personal use. It's refreshing to see a politician from either major party not only speak out about the issue, but actually push legislation to make a difference.
H.R. 2943, The Personal Use of Marijuana by Responsible Adults Act of would remove federal criminal penalties for possession of three and a half ounces or less of pot, according to a report in Reason magazine. It also would allow the not-for-profit transfer of an ounce or less to another adult.Frank's bill reflects a changing mood in the country. As recently as five years ago most national polls showed little public support for decriminalizing marijuana. Polls taken in the past year, however, have shown approval increasing, with a Zogby survey indicating a more than 70 percent approval rating. The public is realizing it's a waste of resources to harass pot smokers; now it seems some in government are coming to the same conclusion.It's not an easy row for Frank and his co-sponsors to hoe. Some critics of the bill mischaracterize it as government endorsing drug use. They have a bizarre view of the world. Frank is the voice of reason on this point as well. "To those who say that the government should not be encouraging the smoking of marijuana, my response is that I completely agree," Frank said in a statement when he introduced the bill. "But it is a great mistake to divide all human activity into two categories: those that are criminally prohibited, and those that are encouraged."That statement is a good summary of how many people view government's role in our lives. By not restricting citizens' freedom to do something, government isn't necessarily supporting the choices people make. It's simply acknowledging that people have the right to decide how they will act.For too many people, including government policy makers, freedom is the citizens' right to choose actions approved by government. Here's a news flash, folks: if you need permission from government to do something that harms no one but yourself, you're not really free. True freedom is the right to choose from any actions that don't harm the rights of others, even if the majority opinion is that such action is harmful to the individual taking it. H.R. 2943 acknowledges that by getting the feds out of at least a small part of the drug prohibition business.Implementing such a law just makes sense. As Aaron Houston, a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project said in support of the bill, "Calls for rethinking our marijuana policies are coming from all quarters, and for good reason. Our decades-long war on marijuana has given us the worst of all possible worlds  a drug that's widely used and universally available but produced and sold entirely by unregulated criminals who obey no rules and pay no taxes."Our nation tried prohibition once before, realized the mistake of trying to control people's behavior, and rectified the problem after about a dozen years. Drug prohibition has been with us for decades with about the same results as alcohol prohibition. It's time to learn from our mistakes and move on. Frank's H.R. 2943 is a step in that direction. This editorial is from the Colorado Springs Gazette, a fellow Freedom Communications newspaper.Source: Appeal-Democrat (CA)Published: September 22, 2009Copyright: 2009 Freedom CommunicationsURL: http://drugsense.org/url/GNVMZgzBWebsite: http://www.appeal-democrat.com/Contact: http://drugsense.org/url/EHLAyrsaCannabisNews -- Cannabis Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/cannabis.shtml
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Comment #4 posted by museman on September 24, 2009 at 10:05:51 PT
excellent statement of truth
" Here's a news flash, folks: if you need permission from government to do something that harms no one but yourself, you're not really free. True freedom is the right to choose from any actions that don't harm the rights of others, even if the majority opinion is that such action is harmful to the individual taking it. "So America, "To be free, or not to be free, that is the question."REPEAL PROHIBITION
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Comment #3 posted by Hope on September 22, 2009 at 19:15:18 PT
Ezrydn
I like that. It's very good. Right to the point.They pay attention to ten letters. They pay big attention to three hundred.
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Comment #2 posted by ezrydn on September 22, 2009 at 17:38:21 PT:
Ltr to Rep
I was plain and to the point. I simply said that when Rep. Frank's bill, H.R. 2943, comes up for a vote, if she votes against it, I'll be voting for her opponent in the next election, no matter who it is.Ya gotta tell'em otherwise, they just don't get it!
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on September 22, 2009 at 17:06:39 PT
Barney Frank 
I really appreciate Barney Frank for standing up for marijuana law reform. 
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