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Why was marijuana outlawed in the first place?
Marijuana was originally outlawed for two major reasons. The first was because "All Mexicans are crazy and marijuana is what makes them crazy." The second was the fear that heroin addiction would lead to the use of marijuana - exactly the opposite of the modern "gateway" idea.
Only one medical doctor testified at the hearings for the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937. The representative of the American Medical Association said there was no evidence that mj was a dangerous drug, and no reason for the law. He pointed out that it was used in hundreds of common medicines with no significant problems. In response, the committee told him that, if he wasn't going to cooperate, he should shut up and leave.
The only other "expert" to testify was James C. Munch, a psychologist. His sole claim to fame was that he had done an experiment where he had injected mj directly into the brains of 300 dogs, and two of them died. When they asked him what he concluded from this, he said he didn't know what to conclude because he wasn't a dog psychologist. He also testified in court, under oath, that mj would make your fangs grow six inches long and drip with blood. He went on to say that, when he tried it, it turned him into a bat. He then described how he flew around the room for two hours and found himself at the bottom of a 200-foot-high inkwell.
Mr. Munch was the only "expert" in the US who thought marijuana should be illegal, so he was appointed US Official Expert on marijuana, where he served -- and guided policy -- for 25 years.
If you read the transcripts of the hearings for the Marihuana Tax Act you will find that the most common question is "What is this stuff?" It was the cannabis plant -- common hemp that had been grown throughout the US since colonial days. Even the hemp farmers who grew it were surprised to hear that a dangerous drug could be made from the plant.
Shortly after the law was passed, Harry Anslinger, then head of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and promoter of the MTA, walked out on a bridge over the Potomac River. He saw before him a field of cannabis that stretched as far as the eye could see. He said he knew then that the law was completely unenforceable. Therefore, he reasoned, the only possible hope was to wage a campaign of such stupendous lies that people would be scared to even touch it.
The laws were absolute lunacy, passed by lunatics, from the very beginning.
For reference, see the short history of the marijuana laws at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer/History/whiteb1.htm
See also the complete transcripts of the hearings for the Marihuana Tax Act at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer/hemp/taxact/taxact.htm
See also, the other histories and historical documents at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer/History/history.htm
A question for the people on this list:
Can you name any significant study of the drug laws in the last 100 years that supports marijuana prohibition?
I have asked this question of every US Drug Czar since William Bennett (under Reagan). I got a personal reply from each. Not one of them could name any significant study of the drug laws that supported marijuana prohibition. In fact, it was quite apparent that they had not read any of the major commission reports.
In 1973, President Nixon's US National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse completed the largest study of the drug laws ever done. At the end of their study, they said the real drug problem was not marijuana, or heroin, or cocaine. The real drug problem, they said, was the ignorance of our public officials who have never bothered to read the most basic research.
These public officials prove that what they said is still true. The full text of every major government commission on drugs from around the world over the last 100 years can be found at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer under Major Studies of Drugs and Drug Policy.
I will bet that not one of these public officials have ever read any of them. I will bet that, even though they are posted online, they will never read them. If they haven't read the major research, then they are ignorant. If they refuse to read it, then the ignorance is deliberate. That is the real problem.
Sorry guys, the State of Colorado saw right through your lies about Marijuana. Colorado will be known as a State who stood up and chose Freedom, not the marijuana state. You guys should be glad - You can now worry about bigger and better things than Marijuana - As you pointed out yourselves, marijuana is simple, and is dangerous in no way at all, so why fight it? The people have spoken, and now it's time for you all to re-evaluate your stance on Marijuana. It's here to stay, like it or not.
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