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March 03, 2010

“Marijuana” and dashed hopes

Just why Harry Anslinger selected a relatively obscure Mexican slang term for demonizing inhaled cannabis in 1937 remains just as uncertain as solid evidence of why he did so remains scarce; nevertheless, subsequent developments make it clear that whatever market for “reefer” might have existed in 1937 must have been small and remained that way until the mid-Sixties; when it began growing to its present size, best described as enormous, but unmeasurable.

In any event, ignorance and carelessness are painfully obvious in the Marijuana Tax Act’s legislative history; not to mention the incoherence and adverse social impact of the Controlled Substances Act by which the Nixon Administration expanded the MTA in 1970. That such “thinking” remains at the heart of official policy in both the US and the UN is solid evidence that current world leadership is sadly lacking; even as our species struggles with unprecedented levels of pollution, overpopulation, climate change, and depletion of critical resources.

Most revealing of all may be the reluctance of those in authority to even acknowledge the obvious, a trait known as denial. Cartoonist Walt Kelly may have said it best when he observed through his character Pogo that “we have met the enemy and he is us.”

How these gloomy observations relate to my ongoing study of marijuana use is becoming clearer to me by the day; even as any hope they will provoke a degree of recognition in people with the power to influence policy fades. President Obama's victory inspired many to believe the "change" he claimed to represent would favor their particular issues; none more than myself. Indeed, he is a poster boy for my typical pot smoker: an academically gifted bi-racial outcast raised by a single mother whose only known contact with his biological father had been a two hour meeting at an airport. He'd also acknowledged he'd once been high on weed, and tried other illegal drugs. Finally, he's known to have an intractable cigarette habit. What better American President could I have hoped for?

Alas, that hope is running out; he seems far too nice a guy to do all the things I want him to do between now and 2012: find some advisers with balls, fire the entire DEA, and take on opposition yahoos directly for their obvious stupidity instead of acting like a bipartisan wuss.

Doctor Tom

Posted by tjeffo at March 3, 2010 04:43 PM