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Drug Czar Dodges Question About Marijuana And Alcohol Regulations

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Gil Kerlikowske

Drug Czar Being Disingenuous and Evasive. No Kidding.

By Bob Humphreys

At the Center for American Progress on May 1, Drug Czar Gil Kerlikowske answered a question from MPP’s Steve Fox regarding marijuana prohibition. Or did he? What Steve essentially asked is that if a great many Americans use both marijuana and alcohol, and alcohol causes disease, violence and death while marijuana is not responsible for any of these problems, why are there laws prohibiting the use of marijuana, if alcohol is legal?

Now, with the exception of some brief gibberish about alcohol prohibition, the issue of allowing a harmful substance (alcohol) to be legally consumed by adults while outlawing a harmless substance (marijuana) was completely ignored. What was addressed, however, was the issue of prescription drugs.

The drug czar argued that there is no reason to tax, regulate, and control marijuana because legal prescription drugs take over 15,000 lives a year, saying, “we do a very poor job of keeping them out of the hands of abusers and young people.” This is interesting for several reasons, the first of which being that marijuana has not been responsible for any deaths in recorded human history. Also, medical marijuana patients are able to substitute marijuana for many of the dangerous prescriptions Gil is talking about, thereby minimizing their risk of becoming one of the 15,000 killed each year by legal prescription medications.

Another reason for skepticism, and probably the most obvious: why should responsible users of a harmless substance be penalized because the ONDCP is bad at its job? By keeping marijuana illegal, Gil and the Obama administration are giving drug dealers and cartels responsibility for deciding who can and cannot buy marijuana instead of an objective system of regulation, and to be honest, I’ve never heard of a drug dealer who checked IDs.

This kind of doubletalk is disrespectful to both the audience and the American people. If someone cannot be trusted to be honest enough to answer a simple question, how can that same person be trusted to make decisions that impact the lives of private citizens?

Source: Marijuana Policy Project

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18 Comments

  1. Steven Murphy on

    NO!! it is not just for the young,,it’s for ALL Americans who want an end to prohibition period

  2. Steven Murphy on

    please add my name to your document because i am in complete agreement with it…Steven E. Murphy  4131 Taylor blvd apt 01 Louisville Kentucky 40215

  3. DECLARATION OF RIGHTS OF CANNABIS USERS

    PREAMBLE

    Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,

    Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,

    Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law.

    Whereas for too long now it has been observed that disregard and contempt for human rights has been allowed to exist in the body of politically motivated law that outlaws the possession, cultivation and use of cannabis by adults. The signatories of this Declaration wish to live in peace in this society, have been engaged in constant communication with their elected representatives individually or as part of groups. The actions of the government in this regards demonstrates continued contempt and disregard that we the undersigned feel that we have NO RECOURSE but to regard our government and some of our fellow citizens as hostile towards our declared rights and indifferent to the tyranny, oppression and terrorism that we have too long had to deal with.

    Whereas by this declaration we provide the opportunity and impudence for representatives to engage in good faith negotiations which will lead to peaceful co-exisistance.

    Whereas we the undersigned do hereby declare that IT IS OUR RIGHT to cultivate, possess and use cannabis AND that any law that says otherwise will be treated by us as the tool of tyranny.

    Whereas we the undersigned in declaring our desire to realize our liberties and our desire to live in peace also recognize that the point is near where our rights and liberties will have to be defended.

    Whereas we the undersigned are willing to do all we can to avoid conflict we hope that this WARNING also provides our fellow citizens and our representatives the impudence to also seek peace and understanding within our society.

  4. SomaticPsych57 on

    I attended a mtg last night with MoveOn and the 99%. The topic of discussion was The Citizens United SCOTUS decision and getting the MONEY OUT OF POLITICS. I don’t care if you are Progressive, Independent, Conservative or Libertarian, this effects all of us. This topic of either Cannabis Legalization or Legal Med-Cann is controlled by corporate, govt, legal and medical interests. Prison industry, Fed-paid Police/DEA eradication and raid programs, the DEA itself, Big Pharma and the AOD Dependency industry etc, ad nauseum are benefitting from Cannabis Prohibition. This all has to do with the $$ in politics.

    I believe that once all people across the political spectrum realize that these vested interests are running scared and doing EVERYTHING they can to keep Cannabis illegal they will wake up and join the fight to take back our democracy (we live in a Plutocracy). It is getting to the point that as more people listen to Prohibitionists spew the same old disproven arguments and scientifically ludicrous “facts”, ie Romney stating that Cannabis is a Gateway Drug which was disproven in the 1990’s, even people sitting on the fence will get tired of it and actually do something.

    We all need to get personal stories of the deadly effects of Prohibition out to everyone. If you are sitting with someone and they are confused about the issue, instead of relating numbers, facts, etc, tell them a personal story of how Prohibition and $$ in Politics has effected all of your family, friends, and communities. People will then continue to join this fight for our country.

    Note: I work on the front lines of AOD Dependency and I see the real problems of hard Rx and Alcohol Dependency and how it affects their families and communities. As a Professional, I see all the $$ wasted on Cannabis Prohibition instead of the hard RXs and this is what really pisses me off. People are DYING BECAUSE OF GREED!

  5. Nygratefulfred on

    typical,this guys job depends on prohibition.If you go to a lawyer he says litigate.If you go to a butcher he says meat.If you go to a surgeon he says operate,and If you go to Kerlikowske he says evasive bullshit and lies.

  6. malcolmkyle on

    This is a long overdue wake-up call to Holton and all those other vile prohibitionists who wish to continue with a policy that has proven itself to be a poison in the veins of our once so proud & free nation

    Prohibition has finally run its course; our prisons are full, our economy is in ruins, the lives and livelihoods of tens of millions of Americans have been destroyed or severely disrupted, and what was once a shining beacon of liberty and prosperity has become a toxic, repressive, smoldering heap of hypocrisy and a gross affront to fundamental human decency. 

    Accordingly, it is now the duty of every last one of us to insure that the people who are responsible for this shameful situation are not simply left in peace to enjoy the wealth and status that their despicable actions have, until now, afforded them. Former and present Prohibitionists must not be allowed to remain untainted and untouched from the unconscionable acts that they have viciously committed on their fellow citizens. – They have provided us with neither safe communities nor safe streets; we will provide them with neither a safe haven to enjoy their ill-gotten gains nor the liberty to repeat such a similar atrocity! 

    If you’re a bottom-dwelling, scum-sucking, prohibitionist parasite who’s career has entailed subjecting the rest of us to off-the-scale corruption and lawlessness, then maybe you should consider moving to somewhere that won’t extradite you to a future national or international drug-war tribunal for your crimes against humanity.  

    Prohibition has evolved local gangs into transnational enterprises with intricate power structures that reach into every corner of society, helping them control vast swaths of territory while gifting them with significant social and military resources. 

    Those responsible for the shameful policy of prohibition shall not go unpunished!

  7. To think I’m paying taxes to pay for this A-holes job. It shows how had he is at gpa job when he starts off saying…well many people say it would help the economy, but prescription drugs kill 14000/year…. Hey fu*ckface! Were talking about marijuana vs. Alcohol prohibition and why the less harmful is illegal. It’s like he’s acknowledging that yes it would help the economy when he starts talking about prescription pills. Were not buying your sh*t anymore! When the US GOVERNMENT ownes the patent on THC and then sells it to big pharma.
    U.S. Patent 6630507 you can no longer say it doesn’t have benifits! Because the overwhelming majority in every political party agree it does have medical benifits.

  8. This guy is not even a good liar! I am so sick of these ppl! First the reporter laughs about the question  like she is ashamed to even be asking the question! Then I am sick of this dodge the question with bull shit!!! AMERICA YOU NEED TO WAKE UP!!!!! GET YOUR HEADS OUT OF THE SAND!!!! USE YOUR PC TO EDUCATE YOURSELF!!! YOUR HEALTH AND YOUR LOVED ONES HEALTH ARE BEING SABOTAGED!!! WHY DO WE CONTINUE TO LET THEM KILL OUR LOVED ONES!!!  Medical Marijuana is NOT a JOKE!! And this is not about young ppl smoking pot! They act like they care about our kids! BULL SHIT!! Tell me why EVERYTHING that is legal alcohol, cigs, kills your kids and you!!!!! AND WHO PUTS THE HARD STUFF ON THE STREETS??  THE CIA DOES!!!!! IT’S THEM!!! WITHOUT MARIJUANA THEY WOULD NOT HAVE A FUCKING WAR ON DRUGS TO BE ABLE TO FILL THEIR PRISONS BECAUSE PPL DON’T WANT THEIR POISON WE WANT CANNABIS!!!!! BUT THEY WANT YOU ON THEIR POISON!! AND ALL OF IT IS POISON INCLUDING PHARMA DRUGS!!!! EXCEPT CANNABIS IT IS THE HEAL ALL CURE!!! THAT IS WHY THEY ARE FIGHTING THIS WE NOW KNOW THE SECRET THEY HAVE WORKED SO HARD TO KEEP FROM US AND THAT IS THAT BY EATING CANNABIS OR USING CANNABIS OIL YOUR BODY WILL BE HEALED! BUT THEY MAKE NO MONEY! DON’T YOU THINK IT IS FUNNY YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED TO GROW A GOD GIVEN PLANT BUT IF YOU LET THEM AND THEIR WHITE COATS PUT IT INTO A PILL THE SAME THC THEN IT IS OK! WTF!!! WHAT DO THEY PLAN ON ADDING TO THAT PILL? MONEY,MONEY,MONEY,MONEY,MONEY!!!! I AM SO SICK OF IT!!! WELL IF THIS IS WAR THAN THIS IS NOW A FULL FLEDGED WAR FOR ME BECAUSE I HAVE SEEN WITH MY OWN EYES WHAT IT HAS HEALED IN THIS HOUSE, DIABETICS, RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME, BOWEL DISORDER, INSOMNIA !!! AND WE NOW TAKE NO PHARMA!!! WE EAT INFUSED CANDY!!!! SO FUCK MY GOV. IF THEY DO NOT ADMIT WHAT THEY HAVE DONE!!! I HAVE LOST ENOUGH FAMILY MEMBERS NEEDLESSLY!!!! ME AND MY FAMILY WILL EAT CANNABIS FOREVER!!!!!

  9. This guy’s talking is so dis-jointed I think he’s on some of those prescription drugs.   This guy is an expert on what?   I think his perception has been warped by some of those prescription drugs.  He was so far off answering the question,  he slapped himself in the back of the head.

  10. Punkrockfan88 on

    I cant help but wonder why everyone one of these fucks is old as shit. Lets get someone in here that can still get an erection w/o viagra to talk about this please. We arent debating on AARP membership fees, this is a topic of a younger generation.

  11. Big Pharma must be protected from the evil weed! No, the plant is here for a reason. Look into legal HEMP production and how it could change America for the better. 

  12. eating_sunshine on

    People who vote no on 501 will get the more of the same kind of answer of people don’t want to legalize it.   Toke of the Town has a very good article on just this point. 
    I think Mr Green should post it here. 

  13. AMEN AND FRICKEN FRACKIN FROCKIN FRUCKIN FREAKIN RIGHT.  LEGALIZE CANABIS AND WE’D BE A HELL OF A LOT BETTER OFF IN THE LONG RUN AND THE DRUG CARTELS WOULD LOSE BILLIONS.  HELL, MAYBE EVEN MORE!

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