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/* Written 10:41 am Jan 3, 1993 by in igc:misc.activism. */ /* ———- "NORML: Cannabis: The Rational View" ———- */ Please share this as widely as possible. If there is a BBS in your area, one whose sysop is sympathetic to the _intelligent_ reconsideration of our traditional societal stand on the management of this particular resource, especially as it can help our environment and economy, please post this message on that board.

Thank you.

Wayne WWU/NORML ———- Forwarded message ———- Date: Sat, 2 Jan 93 04:49 GMT From: "Gerald X. Diamond" To: Wayne Smith Subject: A direct appeal for prompt action by responsible people: DISSEMINATE!!

Gerald X. Diamond 535 13th Av.E.No.106 Seattle WA 98102 Tel:206-324-3523 MCI-Mail 328-1350 January 01, 1993

To: Wayne, Bob, Jerri, Kevin and all my colleagues

  on Internet and out there in Cyberspace:

This is your planet. The quality of life you enjoy in future years depends on the values you adopt right now. Here are three pieces to show you how we are thinking in Seattle. Pass these thoughts on to your network and make the future happen. Let's hear how you feel on these issues. Tell the world…in a loud voice!

                             HAPPY NEW YEAR! -- Jerry Diamond (WCDPR)

1. Cannabis: the rational view

Today, I brought a bag of catnip to Beate's cat, Sire, who is dying of leukemia. At least he could pass his few remaining hours of life in the presence of an herb that brings him memories of happier times.

                    NUCLEAR POWER AND THE DRUG WAR

Last night I met a dying young man. He lost his life cleaning up the radioactive spill from a nuclear reactor accident.

"Was it worth it?" I asked.

"No", he told me, "I know that now – but it's too late. Some of us have to go sooner, I suppose". He took a deep toke on his joint and began coughing again.

A verse from an old poem came to mind:

   For some we loved, the loveliest and the best
   That rolling time hath from his vintage pressed,
   Have drunk their cup a round or two before
   And one by one crept silently to rest.
   And we that now make merry in the room
   They left, and summer dresses in new bloom;
   Must we beneath that couch of earth descend
   Ourselves to make a couch -- for whom? (1)

It was New Years' Eve. We walked the observation deck atop Smith Tower. Below us – between the sturdy safety bars enclosing us – echoed the lights and horns and fireworks of celebration. We shared the smoke. He shared his feelings…sadness at the waste of his precious time.

His last months were being spent in and out of law courts – battling to stay out of jail for growing his own marijuana and sharing it with others. The battle was far from over.

I thought of half a million other pot-smokers, living an uneasy life. Many were behind bars for similar reasons, victims of misguided law enforcement: victims of obsolete laws.

What a waste, I thought. We all have better things to do with our lives than fighting battles for our freedom of thought and personal choice. These are not crimes to be punished by heavy fines and mandatory jail sentencing. How many others were dying like this man … persecuted by the very laws that were intended to give his life meaning!

(1) E. Fitzgerald, "The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam", Dover Publications 1990.

  1. 2-

2. Goals for 1993 by Jeffrey Steinborn, Attorney-at-Law

Getting tough didn't work. It's time we got smart.

Without any perceptible progress towards a victory, the "War on Drugs" doubled this nation's prison population in just ten years. It spawned a black market of enormous wealth and violence, and brought our justice system – that crown jewel among American birthrights – to the brink of catastrophe. These rights we once took for granted … these rights (which Oliver North reminded us, "a lot of men have died face down in the mud all over the world defending") … these rights face extinction.

There is a real danger that the new Clinton Administration understands neither this impending breakdown, nor its causes. Unless we educate the new administration (and thereby perhaps embolden them to lead us), this clearly unsuccessful and increasingly unpopular "War on Drugs" will lumber brutally on, waged by career prosecutors and police who have done it their way for so long, they have forgotten that there is another way.

I join hundreds of thousands of other "Drug War" professionals in proposing a dramatic, yet simple and basic solution:

                   * CAPSIZE THE WAR ON DRUGS! *

Stop wasting billions of scarce tax dollars on "get tough" law enforcement policies which serve only to inflate the price of illegal drugs, and perpetuate the crime, violence and exploitation of vulnerable people. This is what causes an illegal black market to flourish.

Instead, we must spend this money where we already know it will have an impact: on the broad spectrum of activities which have proven to decrease the demand for drugs by means OTHER THAN THE DEMONSTRABLY INEFFECTIVE, COERCIVE FORCE OF THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM!

Government studies suggest that a dollar spent on a head start program is ELEVEN TIMES MORE EFFECTIVE than a dollar spent enforcing drug laws.

  1. 3-

Non-biased truly professional education programs work; they decrease the demand for drugs. It is puzzling that the example of tobacco – the most addictive and the most deadly of all drugs of abuse – is so often ignored: over the last 10 years tobacco use has been reduced by nearly 20% – by providing accurate information in a believable form, and WITHOUT PUTTING A SINGLE PERSON IN PRISON! This should be our inspiration.

We must act now, while priorities are being set in the new administration. We must participate by making our opinions known immediately – in concert and in large numbers. Our leaders and our government must be encouraged to capsize the "War on Drugs" at every level.


We need to persuade our attorneys general to change their priorities. What kind of society are we living in, where an informer can earn $5,000 for turning in a marijuana farmer, but only $500 for a rapist? Why are non-violent drug offenders consistently sentenced to longer prison sentences than violent and predatory criminals?

This isn't what the public wants!

With one stroke of her pen, the Attorney General could capsize the priorities of her army of prosecutors and police. Judges would not quarrel with prosecutors who refused to file charges requiring mandatory sentences for first-time non-violent offenders. U.S. Attorneys who left prosecution of non-violent drug crimes to the discretion of local authorities would not be criticized. There is no shortage of other crimes which DO require the attention of our Federal Government for effective prosecution.

As easily, the Attorney General could order her 7,000 U.S. Attorneys to de- emphasize the seizure of homes from families with the misfortune to have one member who grows marijuana, while emphasizing the literally thousands of predatory financial crimes which go unprosecuted – and whose fruits go unforfeited.

  1. 4-


We must shower our timid lawmakers with letters and calls telling them to abandon the heavy-handed "zero tolerance" drug policies of the Reagan/Bush years and instead use our financial resources to provide drug education and drug treatment on demand. An enlightened government would place more financial emphasis on programs which reduce the demand for drugs by improving the quality of life and hopes for the future.

We must let our representatives know that their constituents are fed up with the costs, both economic and social, and the unmitigated failures of the "War on Drugs". Just as alcohol prohibition proved to be a dismal and expensive failure, leaving in its wake a well-financed criminal underground, so has the "War on Drugs" with its impossible – and yes, hypocritical – goal of a "drug-free" society.


We must first return to the judiciary the power to act independently. Second, we must educate our judiciary to the clear failures of the war on drugs, to their own complicity in these failures, and in the erosion of our essential rights.

"CAPSIZE THE DRUG WAR IN '93" should be our theme for the coming year. We need to make our leaders and the public at large understand that the overzealous drug warriors have brought us to the very edge of a police state, while exacerbating the problem and aiding only those who profit from the "War on Drugs".

Despite millions of arrests and billions of dollars spent, the drug warriors have failed to make a dent in the illegal drug trade. They have only made it more profitable, while assuring that the most vicious and the most desperate outlaws are responsible for the distribution of drugs in our society.

With the proper knowledge, Americans can handle an environment which includes not only alcohol and tobacco, but also those drugs preferred by less traditional members of our society.

Inform yourself. Then pass it on where it will do some good. Write letters, send telegrams, make phone calls. Tell our leaders that we will support them if they choose to capsize the war on drugs.

January 1, 1993 Jeffrey Steinborn

  1. 5-


 by: Hal Nelson, Lenny Maughn, Joe and Jackie Nolze

"CHANGE" … the buzzword of the 1992 elections becomes reality as we slink into 1993. A re-drawn world map, the end of the Cold War, an economy on the mend, and a renewed environmental concern loom on the horizon as we reflect on the events of 1992:

Madonna's "SEX," L.A. riots Ren & Stimpy, Murphy Brown's baby Howard Stern, p-o-t-a-t-o-e bungee jumping, Garth Brooks Wayne's World, Farewells to Johnny Carson, Dennis Miller "1492," and Ross Perot Malcolm X, and Elvis still lives!

Here in the Evergreen State, the "Year of the Woman" brought us a new Senator, the Erotic (censorship) Music Bill was shot down in flames, Grunge Rock reigned supreme, and not a single bridge sank!

And in Seattle last April, a diverse group of Washingtonians came together to DO SOMETHING about the misguided "War on Drugs". Agreeing that both U.S. and State policies – particularly regarding domestic marijuana growers and users – are counterproductive failures, a non-profit public- service membership organization was born: Washington Citizens for Drug Policy Reform.

The fledgling group immediately put its efforts into signature-gathering for the Washington Cannabis Initiative. This measure would have forced a statewide vote on limited legalization of cannabis/hemp/marijuana. By the July deadline, just under half the required 150,001 signatures were gathered: an impressive showing, considering the time and money constraints.

With this experience behind us, WCDPR has laid the groundwork for the 1993 Cannabis Initiative. We expect the approved initiative back from the Secretary of State in late January. An intensive statewide signature gathering campaign will follow. With your help, the initiative can make it on a November statewide ballot!

A New Year. A new Governor. A new President. A new opportunity to end marijuana prohibition in Washington!

On January 20, in come Clinton and Gore, and out go 12 years of Republican intolerance and the most invasive "War on Drugs" in history. In spite of constitutional constraints, the GOP's futile war raged on: sting operations and property forfeiture, mandatory minimum jail sentencing, "Zero Tolerance", using the military in domestic law enforcement, and even a plan to airlift millions of coco-eating moths to destroy the crop in Colombia!

  1. 6-

The new administration will almost certainly bring more sense and compassion to the still-raging "War on Drugs". While they have stated their oppostion to outright legalization, Clinton and Gore bring a strong mandate for change. And the last time a Democrat was president, a wave of marijuana decriminalization swept the nation.

Realizing the absurdity of criminal (jail time) penalties for simple possession of small amounts of marijuana, eleven states decriminalized this infraction to a simple fine, about as serious as a parking ticket. Marijuana use did not increase in these states and millions of law- enforcement and judicial process dollars were saved. To this day, none of these states (representing one-third of the population) have recriminalized marijuana.

There is already one very promising sign from Clinton. His choice for Surgeon General – Dr. Joycelyn Elders – advocates the medicinal use of marijuana in treating glaucoma, and to relieve nausea and improve appetite in patients with cancer or AIDS.

If physicians feel marijuana "would be beneficial for use by the patient, it should be available," she says.

                          LETS GET BUSY!

We can't let the status quo of marijuana prohibition stand still amidst all the changes taking place. We now have a unique opportunity to carry reform across the threshold of change. The 1993 Cannabis Initiative must be on the agenda of change. Discredited demagogic drivel about "drugs" must be tossed out along with the Bush Administration.

Join us in making these changes a part of your New Year's "Revolution".

We need volunteers to gather signatures, for telemarketing and to help us establish and strengthen new chapters of WCDPR. Thousands of copies of the Initiative must be printed. Many long distance phone calls need to be made. Transition teams must be contacted. Inquiries need following up.

The success of this effort is purely a function of available resources. Please give as generously as you can and reach out to your friends and get them to do likewise. Don't let this unique opportunity pass without being a part of it.

Rights are not given: they are taken.

Freedom isn't free: it must be won, and re-won, again and again.

WCDPR, Seattle, New Years' Day, 1993 Hal Nelson, Executive Director Joe and Jackie Nolze, Initiative Coordinators Lenny Maughn, Board of Directors

Here are some challenges that lie ahead:

This year, upon revision of laws and codes relating to cannabis, these things will happen:

o Prisons will begin to release half a million offenders – many now on

 parole -- who have been impoverished by the arrests and incarceration
 that altered their lives.  Who will reach out to these people and help
 them to get on with their lives?  What new values can we share -- and
 what new industries can we offer them to work in?  Could retiring mili-
 tary personnel provide the leadership needed to do this?  Who would
 pay for it?

o Many clearcut forestlands will never grow new trees. Yet hemp – grown

 densely for high tonnage per acre -- is an ideal raw material for
 growing in the Northwest.  It reconditions the soil and also generates
 fiber and cellulose.  It will supply the paper industry, the needs
 of homebuilders, the food industry, the fuel industry .... and the high-
 priced pharmaceutical industry to subsidize the others!.  How can we get
 this process started in time to provide all those new jobs?  Who will
 invest the funds needed to convert the industrial machinery -- to open
 the new markets -- to research new uses -- to gain legislative support?

One final concern:

o Cannabis has been associated for so many years – quite unjustly –

 with "illegal, immoral and violent" activities, that many people fear
 it will contaminate their communities, thwart their religious beliefs
 and corrupt their children.  How can we best deal with these puritanical
 hassles?  How can we educate people whose moral and ethical standards
 impair their sound judgment and acceptance of change?  Can we help to
 reconcile the needs of people in our society who fear, abuse and
 exploit cannabis hemp with the needs of people who know how to use it?

We need answers to these questions. Indoor planting time for Cannabis Hemp is RIGHT NOW! Fields transplanted in late April or May should yield 4 to 8 tons per acre by August or September, with a second crop by November, if harvested for biomass (fiber, pulp, fuel). The yield from that crop will prove beyond any doubt that Cannabis Hemp is a viable industry.

Your prompt action will make this possible.


 Gerald X. Diamond, Technical Director
 Fax replies to: 206-682-9937   Voicemail:206-227-4164
 Snailmail: P.O. Box 1416, Renton WA 98057

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