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Marijuana laws xenophobic

U.S. Anti-Doping Agency director Larry Bowers’ questionable claim that

marijuana is a performance-enhancing drug may compel non-smoking athletes to pick up the pipe. Lost in the debate over marijuana in sports is the ugly truth behind marijuana prohibition. America’s marijuana laws are based on culture and xenophobia, not science.

The first marijuana laws were enacted in response to Mexican migration during the early 1900s, despite opposition from the American Medical Association.

White Americans did not even begin to smoke marijuana until a soon-to-be entrenched government bureaucracy began funding reefer madness propaganda.

Dire warnings that marijuana inspires homicidal rages have been counterproductive at best. According to your May 6 article, an estimated

47 percent of Americans have now smoked pot. The reefer madness myths have long been discredited, forcing the drug war gravy train to spend millions of tax dollars on politicized research, trying to find harm in a relatively harmless plant.

Illegal drug use is the only public health issue wherein key stakeholders are not only ignored, but actively persecuted and incarcerated. In terms of medical marijuana, those stakeholders happen to be cancer and AIDS patients.

Oregon patients may be protected, but medical marijuana providers aren’t.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has raided numerous medical marijuana providers in states with compassionate-use laws. The very same federal government that claims illicit drug use funds terrorism is forcing sick patients into the hands of street dealers.

Apparently marijuana prohibition is more important than protecting the country from terrorism. Students who want to help end the intergenerational culture war, otherwise known as the war on some drugs, should contact Students for

Sensible Drug Policy at

Robert Sharpe, M.P.A., Program Officer, Drug Policy Alliance