Highest greetings from Amsterdam. I’m happy to report all sorts of positive activity on the marijuana legalization front this month, from the decision of the South American nation of Uruguay to legalize weed for all citizens to the call by New York City Comptroller John Liu—a candidate for mayor this fall—to legalize medical marijuana and allow adults to possess an ounce of pot for recreational use, measures that he reckons would pump more than $400 million into the city’s coffers.
As Larry Gabriel reported in the Metro Times a couple of weeks ago, Uruguay’s General Assembly passed a bill that would legalize growing, selling and possessing the plant. The measure still has to pass the Senate and be signed by President José Mujica, but “it would seem there’s no contest there,” Gabriel says, “as the Senate is reportedly more in favor of the legislation than the General Assembly—and Mujica proposed it in the first place.”
Among other reasons, the movement to consider legalizing marijuana in South & Central America is aimed at taking the market away from drug gangs. Gabriel points out that the presidents of Guatemala, Colombia and Mexico have proposed the possibility of legalizing and regulating drugs, and former Mexican “drug warrior” presidents Ernesto Zedillo and Vicente Fox have both now claimed that marijuana prohibition has failed.
While other nations such as Holland and Portugal have decriminalized drugs and allow pot to be smoked and traded openly, legalization has remained off the international Drug War table until now. Uruguay’s move to break the drug policy stranglehold the United States has held for decades over governments in the hemisphere—and throughout the western world—could lead to other countries becoming emboldened to change their own policies.
The U.S. Drug War industry has used the Single Drug Convention of 1972, a nefarious stratagem devised by the evil Richard M. Nixon regime to keep signatory nations tied to the devious U.S. concept of outlawing all recreational usage of marijuana and other drugs and making legalization impossible. I never could understand why all these countries were still clinging to this transparent tissue of horseshit, but it takes only one brave combatant to raise the flag of determined opposition to U.S. tyranny of this sort, and our hats are off to Uruguay for firing the first shot in the final winning battle to Free The Weed around the world.
My compatriot Steve The Fly in Amsterdam, host of Fly By Night heard Wednesdays on Radio Free Amsterdam, conducted an interview with the late writer and visionary Robert Anton Wilson back in 2002 than continues to resonate more than 10 years later, and I’d like to share a few parts of it with you here:
RAW: Legalization of medical marijuana has a lot of support across the board, but all the enemies of medical marijuana point out that as soon as it’s legalized there’s gonna be no control: how they gonna know who’s got a medical problem? The federal government can arrest and harass a lot of people with that kind of conviction stick.
Recently the D.E.A. raided the Women’s Alliance for Medical Marijuana which distributes marijuana to about 300 cancer and AIDS patients in the Santa Cruz [California] area, and to a few suffering from muscular dystrophy and post polio syndrome and other problems which are helped by marijuana very clearly and obviously.
They swooped down and arrested the two people who own the farm where most of it is grown and chopped down all the plants and carted them away to destroy them presumably.
I get my pot absolutely free from the Women’s Alliance for Medical Marijuana which doesn’t charge, it’s a cooperative and we do what we can to keep it going. Now that they’ve been raided we’re gonna have to do more, we’re gonna have to decentralize even further, decentralize the production, the making of the tinctures, the cookies, the brownies and whatever forms we wanna take it in that’s best for our condition— some people still smoke it—and we’re gonna have to decentralize the growth and production and distribution.
They’re taking medicine away from dying people in pain. I mean, that’s worse than anything they’ve done internationally—it’s happening right here to American citizens. Most of the members of WAMM are dying, most of them are terminally ill cases, they’re in pain most of the time and the marijuana takes the pain away or at least eases it and in most cases it takes it away for hours.
The idea that these people with AIDS and cancer should die in pain because God doesn’t want them to have any relief from the pain, I don’t see how long they can hang on to this idiocy—it’s like something out the middle ages, you know, it’s worse than medieval, it’s the dark ages.
For one reason or another, the medical marijuana issue is especially good because—how can I say this—it takes a great deal of faith, blind faith in the government to believe that by taking medicine away from sick people they’re doing something to protect us from terrorism—which is their official line, and I have the feeling this is gonna bounce back in their faces.
What are they gonna do if 85 percent of the people in Santa Cruz County are against the D.E.A. coming in? They gotta arrest the whole goddamn county, they gotta build a fence around the whole damn county and say we’re all in jail now! I dunno, they might do that.
But the more they fight it, the more drugs appear. Yeah, when they made marijuana illegal in 1937, there were an estimated 100,000-500,000 pot smokers in the United States, most of them in Texas and New Orleans. Now the estimates run between 20 million and 70 million after all this money that’s been spent.
What I’m really afraid of is when they decide to legalize it, they’ll come up with a pill that contains the derivative of cannabis that kills pain, but it doesn’t get you high. And then they’ll charge about $50 a pill, so for real relief from pain it’ll be out of reach for most of the population and they will still go on suffering or buying from black market dealers.
Meanwhile they’ll have a better excuse to close down the medical marijuana cooperatives: “Hey, we got a legal form here and it doesn’t produce that terrible euphoria that’s bad for you” [laughs, smiles]. They all complain about euphoria as one of the bad side effects of cannabis. Apparently you’re not in your right mind in this country unless you feel vaguely miserable, apprehensive and depressed. If you start feeling euphoric there must be something wrong with you.
What the hell! I think euphoria is part of the treatment! There’s tons of evidence that feeling good is good for your health. So their attempt to take the joy out of marijuana just means they want you to take longer to heal whatever you use it for if your using it for medical purposes.
Thanks, Steve. Free The Weed!
August 17-18, 2013
© 2013 John Sinclair. All Rights Reserved.