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October 2003
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A Celebration over Supreme Court Inaction!

OK, I was impressed with the Chicago Sun Times editorial I reported yesterday regarding the Supreme Court’s refusal to take on the government’s appeal regarding doctors and medical marijuana. What I didn’t realize was how widespread this was.
It seems we have reached a point in the government’s insane harrassment, that people have been waiting for a moment of rationality.
Tonight, I’m letting the editorial writers speak. Here’s just a sample of what’s in the editorial pages around the country:
The Palm Beach Post Editorial:

The Supreme Court has taken a belated but welcome step back from Reefer Madness. The decision should bring relief from unnecessary suffering to some Americans. It also should make the federal government butt out…. By making marijuana a Schedule 2 drug, like morphine, the government could look compassionate and sensible on the issue. At last.

Baltimore Sun Editorial:

The supreme court sent a strong signal yesterday that it agrees with those who think the federal anti-marijuana campaign has gone overboard… President Bush’s drug czar, John P. Walters, who has built enthusiastically on anti-marijuana policies launched during the Clinton administration, should take the hint from the court and practice restraint… The high court’s decision to let that ruling stand is only a milestone in a long-running saga, but an important one worth applauding.

St. Petersburg Times Editorial:

… the U.S. Supreme Court has taken away one of the tools Attorney General John Ashcroft has used to try and assert federal authority over an issue that should be left to the states… Ashcroft continues to try to subvert the voters’ will in California and elsewhere where medical marijuana was legalized through an initiative process. His interest in state’s rights, so evident when he was a public official in Missouri, seems to have dissipated since he ascended to the top federal law enforcement job.

Detroit Free Press Editorial:

The U.S. Supreme Court came down on the side of compassion in deciding that federal drug warriors should back off from prosecuting doctors who recommend marijuana use for medical purposes… If states are willing to allow it, the federal government should let them be and concentrate on more pressing drug issues: busting those who deal in large quantities of harder drugs.

San Francisco Gate Editorial:

CALIFORNIA DOCTORS should feel both vindicated and emboldened by the U.S. Supreme Court’s refusal to outlaw doctor-patient discussions on the possible benefits of medical marijuana.

Las Vegas Review Journal Editorial:

By refusing the case, the Supreme Court struck a blow for free speech and state’s rights…

The Oregonian Editorial:

The government has no business telling doctors what they can and can’t say to their patients about any medical issue, including whether they think marijuana might help them….As we wrote in this space Tuesday, we would prefer a public decision on the central issue in all this — whether marijuana use and cultivation ought to be legal. Until that day arrives, though, the war on marijuana must not be fought by muzzling doctors and threatening their careers.

Denver Post Editorial:

…decisions on what’s effective in treating illnesses should be based on science, not politics. We hope we’ve come a long way since the 17th century when Galileo had to recant what he knew to be true – that the Earth revolved around the sun…. We welcome the high court’s action on Tuesday as a step toward rational thought rather than pure emotion.

Clarence Page’s Column (Chicago Tribune and syndicated nationwide):

It was a small step for the U.S. Supreme Court, but one giant leap toward a sane drug policy….Now they should take the next step: Get the federal government off the backs of state medicinal marijuana laws. Then we might avoid atrocities like the Ed Rosenthalcase….Polls tend to show a large majority of Americans support allowing marijuana for medicinal use. But progress is held up by a vocal minority of anti-pot zealots who would rather treat marijuana as a matter of crime and punishment, instead of public health.

This is a good time to remind your representative that the ones out of touch are the politicians. Send them one of these articles. Tell them what you feel. If they finally believe that they can allow the states to make their own medical marijuana decisions without political fallout (or better yet, realize that inaction on their part will bring negative consequences), the laws may finally change.