Who Wants Pot to Be Illegal?
Well, of course Big Pharma is against pot: if it were legal to grow one’s own medicine in one’s backyard—a medicine that is more effective than many painkillers, muscle relaxants and anxiety reducers and has fewer side effects—nobody would buy Big Pharma’s high-priced merchandise [Lee Fang, “The Anti-Pot Lobby’s Big Bankroll,” July 21/28]!
I live in Colorado, where marijuana sales are legal. Our crime rate is down, we have collected over $10 million in taxes, and we have freed the police to concentrate on real crime. Plus pot is safer than any other legal drug out there.
“One try and it can ruin your life,” says the man who will ruin your life if he catches you trying it.
Marijuana helps millions of people cope with sickness and pain. OxyContin is a scourge. I’ve had five friends die from OxyContin. Two more are doing prison time because of their addiction to it. Marijuana has never killed anyone. These companies have a vested interest in keeping cannabis illegal.
I went through a twelve-hour back surgery after a wreck. Nothing but pain for two years after. I was on Vicodin—a dreadful way to live. Decided to stop, and went through a week of shakes, pain and vomiting. Pot helped with the pain, but with none of the dreadful addictive consequences.
Police departments, courts, prisons, the DEA and a zillion other agencies feed off the illegal drug trade. With legal weed, we could drastically cut back on those agencies—but none of them want to legalize themselves out of a job.
BDS: Every Little Bit Helps
Noam Chomsky is undoubtedly right that a boycott campaign directed at Israel is not likely to work [“On Israel-Palestine and BDS,” July 21/28]. Nevertheless, his article was such a powerful indictment of Israel’s occupation, and of our government’s unstinting support of Israel, that it persuaded me to go on supporting the boycott—whether or not it works. No single tactic will change Israel’s ways or break its iron grip on Congress and US public opinion. If Israel can rain down bombs day after day on the poorest and most densely populated strip of territory on earth—killing thousands of people and forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes—and still be defended by President Obama and the mainstream press, obviously much more than a boycott is needed. So in addition to supporting the boycott, I’ll go on writing letters to Congress and the White House urging an end to US aid to Israel, and supporting Middle East peace groups. If we keep up the pressure, something someday may work. Meanwhile, thanks to Chomsky for having done his part, and done it so eloquently, for all these years.
mill valley, calif.