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‘Pot Apocalypse’ Looms, Marijuana Foes Warn

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Reefer MadnessBy Phillip Smith

Not everybody is happy with Thursday’s Justice Department announcement that it would not interfere with taxed, regulated, and legalized marijuana in Colorado and Washington. While the announcement was greeted with accolades (and some questions) by the drug policy reform community, opponents of marijuana law reform were up in arms and prophesying hellfire and damnation.

“Decades from now, the Obama administration will be remembered for undoing years of progress in reducing youth drug use in America,” Dr. Paul Chabot of the Coalition for a Drug Free California said in a statement. “This president will be remembered for many failures, but none as large as this one, which will lead to massive youth drug use, destruction of community values, increased addiction and crime rates.”

Chabot is also the the co-author, along with a Richard Morgan, of “The Eternal Battle Against Evil: A Comprehensive Strategy to Fight Terrorists, Drug Cartels, Pirates, Gangs, and Organized Crime,” and the coalition web site also hawks Morgan’s “Soros: The Drug Lord. Pricking the Bubble of American Supremacy.”

While Chabot, with his Anslingerian fulminations and Manichean thinking, represents old school Reefer Madness-style prohibitionism, the new school prohibitionists aren’t too pleased either.

“We can look forward to more drugged driving accidents, more school drop-outs, and poorer health outcomes as a new Big Marijuana industry targeting kids and minorities emerges to fuel the flames,” warned former US Rep. Patrick Kennedy in a statement issued by Project SAM (Smart About Marijuana), a neo-prohibitionist organization that couches its policy aims amid public health concerns.

“This is disappointing, but it is only the first chapter in the long story about marijuana legalization in the US. In many ways, this will quicken the realization among people that more marijuana is never good for any community,” said Project SAM co-founder and director Kevin Sabet.

Project SAM warned that after the Obama administration instructed prosecutors to go easy on medical marijuana in 2009, “public health consequences soared” and called on the federal government to fund “robust data monitoring systems” to track those alleged consequences.

“In Colorado, we’ve seen an explosion of consequences among kids as a result of the new industry that emerged around so-called medical marijuana after 2009,” remarked Christian Thurstone, SAM Board Member and Denver Health treatment provider. “We now have to prepare the floodgates.”

Just what will come through those floodgates, though, is unclear. Reform advocates point to 2011 data showing that youth marijuana use declined in Colorado since the state adopted its system of regulated dispensaries in 2009.

The taxpayer-funded Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) also weighed in with disappointment, doom, and gloom.

“The Department of Justice announced that it will not sue to block the implementation of laws in Colorado and Washington that legalize marijuana, despite the fact that these laws are in conflict with federal law,” said CADCA head Gen. Arthur Dean in a statement. “CADCA and its more than 5,000 community coalitions across the country have been anticipating a response from the administration that would reaffirm the federal law and slow down this freight train. Instead, this decision sends a message to our citizens, youth, communities, states, and the international community at large that the enforcement of federal law related to marijuana is not a priority.

“The fact remains that smoked marijuana is not medicine, it has damaging effects on the developing adolescent brain, and can be addictive, as evidenced by the fact that 1 in 6 youth who use it will become addicted,” Dean claimed, adding that the country is in “a growing crisis” as marijuana law reforms take hold. “The nation looks to our Justice Department to uphold and enforce federal laws.  CADCA is disappointed in the Justice Department’s decision to abdicate its legal right in this instance.  We remain gravely concerned that we as a nation are turning a blind eye to the serious public health and public safety threats associated with widespread marijuana use.”

Despite the bitter disappointment of the prohibitionists, marijuana law reform is moving forward, and the momentum is only likely to accelerate in the years to come. We shall see in a few years if their dire warning are correct—if the country is still standing, that is.

Article From StoptheDrugWar.org - Creative Commons Licensing - Donate

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Johnny Green

38 Comments

  1. There will always be those unfortunate humans who are not ready to receive the wisdom that Mother Hemp would impart to them if they could conquer their fear, admit their ignorance and abandon their superstitions. For those of us who fully embrace her path, of greatness & goodness, we have much to be thankful for. She will always be there for us filling our lives with love, truth, wellness, healing and togetherness.

  2. cannabis users are actually healthier and happier than their non-using counterparts. why would any doctor want healthier patients? there’s no money in that!

  3. marcosanthonytoledo on

    They afraid that their slave labor lab rat prison system will be put out of business or cut down at least.

  4. Shale City Surfer on

    Rhonda – turns out that cannabis during breast feeding actually improves several cognitive functions/responses in the newborns. The newborns are better able to track moving objects, better able to stay focused when they want on other objects, and are far less fussy (among many other positive benefits). There’s more info in the book called, “Smoke Signals”. It has all sorts of data from studies from all over the world; universities, hospitals, clinics, countries where it’s legal and/or commonly used, etc. You’ll love it! Have a great day! :-)

  5. If anything, cannabis use helped me to practically stop using another drug: alcohol. Gateway drug my ass!

  6. I’m starting DAM. Marijuana Against Dyslexia. I am certain that Marijuana can be used to treat learning disabilities. I have seen medical marijuana make it’s way into this and other states. The sky has not fallen despite the terrible predictions of the doomsayers. Where do these people get this nonsense?

  7. Conspiracy Theories based on a false premise as an ideology are always false no-matter how many facts are used to support the false premise …the premise will always be false.

  8. Sabat and his ilk only spew the propaganda of NIDA and the profiteer’s of prohibition who have cause untold suffering among the good people of this nation.
    To support prohibition is a crime in itself…..

    We the citizens of this nation will no longer tolerate the lies of the cannabis prohibitionists and we will no longer allow needless suffering among the good people of this nation.
    Thank you Mr. President for allowing an end to the American Slave Trade with the For-Profit Prison Industry…

  9. i was a pot smoker in my youth that never moved onto other illegal drugs. i stopped smoking during every pregnancy and stayed stopped thru a year of breastfeeding.. nary a withdrawal symptom, one. i don’t smoke now but once or twice a year and i’m near 60. this is ridiculous about causing you to begin other drugs and about it’s own “addictive power”. simply rediculous!

  10. Is this friggin guy kidding? More stoned drivers? Are you retatrded guy? Do you have any idea how many kids get strung out and or die from mommies pill box? Really? And your worried about weed? Hahahahahaha not even mentioning alcohol. Hey- I guess I can’t blame ya. If ur job was my job I’d b doin my job too. (I’d never have that job tho to begin with) all your arguments are baseless..
    Public safety threats assoc. w mmj?? Like what? Increased Doritos sales? Gtfoh u ponce.

  11. i hope the prohibitionists have their future ripped apart just as bad as the drug war messed with mine.

  12. They really, really don’t get it, that they’ve lost credibility with the public. The proof of it is when they keep referencing NIDA studies and no body gives a rats ass what NIDA says anymore.

  13. It is kind of amusing to watch the ever shrinking, increasingly frantic prohibitionists repeat the decades old lies supporting their position. Until recently, politicians and others preaching against legalization were able to silence anyone attempting to bring objective science into the conversation by shouting “pothead” or “soft on drugs”. Those unsupported accusations now fall on deaf ears as the general population is looking at reality instead of propaganda.

  14. Patrick Kennedy joining SAM is like Rick Perry joining Mayors Against Illegal Guns! You know what I mean right?

  15. Chabot and Kennedy ought to change their damn organization to D.A.M.: Dumb Approach to Marijuana.

  16. OK, Patrick, this is the last time I’m going to say this: a Smarter Approach to Marijuana would have had the family commissioning Teddy’s inoperable glioma stricken brain to Cannabis Science – inoperable, short survival window, nothing to lose. Wouldn’t it have been extraordinary if he’d survived & endured to vote on the health care package, and see Prohibition abolished? But you, Sir, will be expected to answer, soon, when traffic fatalities go definitively, unmistakeably DOWN.
    And you, too, Mr. Sabet – thanks for the absoluteness of your claim that “more MJ is never good for any community.” You’ll be seeing abundant evidence of the falsity of this statement, & very soon. Will you step up then?

  17. Kennedy and Chabot would do the country a whole lot more good if they invested their time (and other people’s money) in educating the public about the dangers of meth, crack cocaine and prescription opiates, which are real and well documented.

  18. This unwaivering prohibitionoist rehtoric in the face of the overwhelming scientic data on medical cannabis and as compared to other “drugs” such as alcohol, nicotine and hard drugs is indicative of how truly scary these individuals/organizations are to not only the cannabis reform movement but to society as a whole. Big brother telling the world what is true and corrrect to further their adgenda(s). The 60’s mantra of “dont trust anyone over 30” has morphed into “dont trust political leadership”. Truly a cause for concern way beyond the issue of cannabis.

  19. firetheliberals on

    Unbelievable. These talking points are the bunch of BS I have ever seen. Reminds of the Red Scare of the McCarthy era. Next thing they will say is that Nile River will turn red and a plague of locusts will strike.

  20. “The fact remains that smoked marijuana is not medicine, it has damaging
    effects on the developing adolescent brain, and can be addictive, as
    evidenced by the fact that 1 in 6 youth who use it will become
    addicted,” Dean claimed,

    This is actually good for the cause! The more these kooks keep pounding away with their reefer-madness crap, the more they prove themselves as idiots. The general population can no longer be lied to in this fashion as the facts can easily be obtained in seconds with the internet. Back in the day of reefer-madness there was no information super highway, or even any real information readily available(back then it was ‘if it is printed in the newspaper it has to be the truth’…remember?) so the general population somewhat believed the bad info they were getting. Such is no longer the case. Anyone spewing this crap from their mouths are immediately disregarded because the public knows better!

  21. They bend the information to support their moral opinions. If no facts exist to embellish their “moral high ground”, they make some up. “Facts” are whatever supports their local witch hunts.

    It has no inherent resemblance to truth.

  22. Made up in a lot of cases or twisted to fit an agenda. Patrick Kennedy thinks marijuana is a gateway drug. Though he smoked little of it growing up, he soon moved on to alcohol and prescription pain killers which ultimately led to his fall from Congress. But marijuana started it all, damn it. He just needed SAM to point the way for him, not unlike Scientology. You know, the cult of addiction? Idiots.

  23. From where do these people get their facts? Do they think that just saying these things over and over again that it will be true? Dangerous minds.

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