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April 2006
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We’re way ahead of the politicians

Here’s a big part of our problem.
In this column by Bill McLellan in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, he talks favorably about a visit from LEAP member Howard Woolridge. McLellan, like Woolridge, thinks that all drugs should be legalized and regulated. But what about the politicians?

…I wondered if we are about to reach the second phase of this particular fight. That would be getting the politicians on board.
The people are ahead of the pols on this. […]
But what politician dares speak the truth to this issue? I remember when James Gierach ran in the Democratic gubernatorial primary in Illinois in 1994. He was a straight arrow, a former assistant state’s attorney from Cook County. He had reached the same conclusion that Woolbridge has reached. Party leaders treated Gierach as if he were a nut. He was not even allowed to participate in the debates, so he crashed them, and the papers, including this one, made his crusade seem like a farce.
Even now, when I mention legalization to candidates, they say, “Can you imagine what my opponents would do to me in a 30-second attack commercial?”
So the politicians leave the truth to fellows like Woolbridge….

If only politicians could handle the truth! Ah, but I must be some kind of deluded idealist to even imagine such a thing.

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