Marijuana: Why ex-drug warriors hate Amendment 64, other drug initiatives
In other wildly-unexpected news: The sky is, indeed, blue.
William Bennett and John Walters, both former directors of the White House Office of National Drug Policy (under George Bush and George W. Bush, respectively) head the loose-knit group. Last month, they sent letters to both President Barrack Obama and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder urging them to take a public stance on Oregon's Measure 80, Washington's Initiative 502 and Colorado's Amendment 64. All three would legalize limited amounts of cannabis for adult use. In Colorado, Amendment 64 would also allow for the creation of retail cannabis shops whose products would be taxed and regulated in ways similar to alcohol.
The group isn't really asking for anything else in their letters. They merely remind President Barrack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder that marijuana is illegal at the federal level as defined by the Controlled Substances Act, and argue that by remaining silent, the two are conveying "to the American public and the global community a tacit acceptance of these dangerous initiatives".
On Monday, the group held a virtual teleconference cheekily-dubbed "What are they Smoking?" We missed the press conference because we were busy smoking cannabis, but we assume the conference went something like this:
Talking head: "Blah blah blah, marijuana is bad."
Talking head two: "Blah blah blah, federal laws are in conflict with state legalization."
Talking head three: "Blah blah blah, blah blah blah."
Feel free to make the rest of the conversation up in your head based on the last forty years of rhetoric from the war on drugs: It probably wouldn't be be far off from what really transpired. Our friends over at the Huffington Post did get a few quotes (as well as comment from Amendment 64 proponent Mason Tvert), and they are exactly what you would imagine them to be. If you really are a glutton for punishment, you can listen to the .mp3 of the conference on the TrueCompassion.org site.
Continue to read the group's letters to President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder opposing cannabis measures in Colorado, Oregon and Washington.