The article on marijuana in the April 4 edition of Vernonia’s Voice contains so much false information that it is difficult to know where to start, so let’s begin with the headline. “Science of Drugs: Marijuana” implies that marijuana is a drug. It is not a drug. It’s a plant – and a relatively innocuous one at that.
The article rightly states that the plant is illegal under Federal law. A little history lesson is appropriate to understand how that came to be. Prohibition of alcohol ended in 1933 with the repeal of the 21st Amendment. One of the immediate effects of repeal was that several thousand Federal law enforcement officials were no longer needed since there were insufficient illegal intoxicants to justify their continued employment. Enter one Harry J. Anslinger, who relentlessly spread propaganda about a powerful new threat among us – a mysterious “drug” known as marijuana. Among the claims he made are, “Marijuana is an addictive drug which produces in its users insanity, criminality, and death.” And, “…the primary reason to outlaw marijuana is its effect on the degenerate races. Reefer makes darkies think they’re as good as white men.”
That was the justification used to make marijuana illegal. Read More