Ending Prohibition (again)

Common sense tells us that the difference between alcohol and marijuana is a generational one.  The last generation thought it was fine to have martini at lunch and smoke in the office.  But if you knew someone who smoked marijuana, you were running with a dangerous crowd.  

We know that alcohol kills thousands every year.  We know that America tried a government enforced prohibition on alcohol, and it did nothing to curtail alcohol use.  Today alcohol is linked to many violent crimes and numerous traffic fatalities.  Almost everyone in America knows someone whose life has been touched by drunk driving.                          

Common sense also tells us that tobacco is every bit as deadly as marijuana, if not more so.  Tobacco is as addictive as heroin and results in thousands of deaths from cancer and heart disease every year.

And yet tobacco and alcohol are not controlled substances.  Society does regulate their usage -- minors cannot buy either.  You can't be served at a bar if you're already drunk.  But over the 4th of July week my extended family got together for my parents 50th wedding anniversary.  It was a large gathering and I went to Kappys to buy a grocery cart full of booze that the 20 adults would drink over the week.  And no one cared.  I, one person alone, bought an entire shopping cart filled with alcohol.  And I wasn't even carded.  Of course I'm no spring chicken...

I also went to CVS to buy some Sudafed, but for that I needed two forms of identification.  Does that make sense to anyone?

I firmly support HR 2306:  The Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2011 - It amends the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) to: 

  1. Provide that such Act shall not apply to marijuana, except that it shall be unlawful to ship or transport from one state, territory, or district (jurisdiction) of the United States to another, or from a foreign country into such a U.S. jurisdiction, marijuana that is intended to be received, possessed, sold, or in any manner used in violation of any law of such jurisdiction; and 
  2. Remove marijuana and thc from the list of Schedule I controlled substances.

This bill would make marijuana as controlled a substance as alcohol or tobacco.  There could still be age restrictions and laws about driving impaired and against public intoxication.

Who else supports this bill?  Well the legislation was co-sponsored by Barney Frank and Ron Paul, Michael Capuano, Charlie Rangel and Denis Kucinich -- among others.  Broad bipartisian support recognizes that the war on drugs is being enforced in an absurd way.  

From Gary Johnson's web page:

OVER A MILLION AND A HALF AMERICANS were arrested last year on drug charges, and nearly 40% of those arrests were for marijuana possession alone. Does this make sense?

It's time to end the war on marijuana.  It's common sense.

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