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Legitimate debate? Not likely.

Posted by on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:18 PM
  • 194 Replies

 Several weeks ago, President Obama stated that he believed the subject of drug legalization and regulation was “an entirely legitimate topic for debate.” Yet recent actions by White House Office of National Drug Control Policy head Gil Kerlikowske imply that this administration has no interest in having this debate in the public arena — at least not in Seattle.

On Friday, February 18, the Seattle Times editorial board opined in favor of House Bill 1550, which legalizes and regulates the “production, distribution, and sale” of marijuana to adults. (You can contact your state elected officials in support of the measure here.) The editorial, titled “The Washington Legislature should legalize marijuana” did not mince words.

Marijuana should be legalized, regulated and taxed. The push to repeal federal prohibition should come from the states, and it should begin with the state of Washington.

… Some drugs have such horrible effects on the human body that the costs of prohibition may be worth it. Not marijuana. This state’s experience with medical marijuana and Seattle’s tolerance policy suggest that with cannabis, legalization will work — and surprisingly well.

Not only will it work, but it is coming.

According to Seattle Times editorial page editor Ryan Blethen, the public’s reaction to the paper’s pot-friendly position was overwhelming.

“It is rare we publish an editorial on a hot topic and receive near universal praise. But that is what happened last week when we came out in support of Washington state legalizing cannabis,” Bethen wrote in February 25 commentary. “When people take the time to e-mail or call me about an editorial, it is usually because they do not agree with the editorial page. This editorial was different. The compliments rolled in, the discussion in the comments section of the editorial is nearing 600 and is interesting and thoughtful — which is not always the case — and so far the editorial has been recommended by about 3,000 people on Facebook.”

Yet there was is one prominent, former Seattle resident who is clearly not amused by the Times call for “a sober discussion about marijuana.” That person is the Drug Czar, Gil Kerlikowske.

The Seattle alt-weekly The Stranger has the details — and they aren’t pretty.

White House Requests Meeting with Seattle Times to Bully Against Pro-Pot Editorials
via The Stranger

The Stranger has learned that immediately after the Seattle Times ran an editorial last week supporting a bill to tax and regulate marijuana, the newspaper got a phone call from Washington, D.C. The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy director Gil Kerlikowske wanted to fly to Seattle to speak personally with the paper’s full editorial board.

The meeting is scheduled for next Friday, an apparent attempt by the federal government to pressure the state’s largest newspaper to oppose marijuana legalization. Or at least turn down the volume on its new-found bullhorn to legalize pot.

Bruce Ramsey, the Seattle Times editorial writer who wrote the unbylined piece, says the White House called right “right after our editorial ran, so I drew the obvious conclusion… he didn’t like our editorial.”

… This isn’t the first time the Obama Administration has campaigned to keep pot illegal. Kerlikowske, who is also Seattle’s former police chief, also traveled to California last fall to campaign against Prop 19, a measure to decriminalize marijuana and authorize jurisdictions to tax and regulate it.

NORML Has long argued that pot prohibition can not withstand careful and consistent scrutiny from the mainstream media. The Drug Czar knows this to be true better than anyone; hence the White House’s need to try and squelch any media-led ‘legitimate debate.’ Fortunately, the genie is out of the bottle and isn’t going back — at least not in Seattle. In fact, just days after The Drug Czar’s phone call, the Seattle Times reiterated their editorial support for legalization, stating “the costs of prohibition in police, courts, jails, gang warfare, civil liberties and blighted lives are too high, especially for a product that lends itself so well to be handled like alcohol.”

Like it or not President Obama, you are going to get your debate. We’re ready; are you?

http://networkedblogs.com/eSaVY

Wonder whose payroll Kerlikowski is on. More change I can't believe in.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

by on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:18 PM
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Replies (1-10):
tericared
by on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:21 PM

Marijuana should be legalized, regulated and taxed. The push to repeal federal prohibition should come from the states, and it should begin with the state of Washington.

Friday
by HRH of MJ on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:21 PM

 But wait, there's more.

White House Requests Meeting with Seattle Times to Bully Against Pro-Pot Editorials

Posted by Dominic Holden on Fri, Feb 25, 2011 at 12:31 PM

The Stranger has learned that immediately after the Seattle Times ran an editorial last week supporting a bill to tax and regulate marijuana, the newspaper got a phone call from Washington, D.C. The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy director Gil Kerlikowske wanted to fly to Seattle to speak personally with the paper's full editorial board.

The meeting is scheduled for next Friday, an apparent attempt by the federal government to pressure the state's largest newspaper to oppose marijuana legalization. Or at least turn down the volume on its new-found bullhorn to legalize pot.

Bruce Ramsey, the Seattle Times editorial writer who wrote the unbylined piece, says the White House called right “right after our editorial ran, so I drew the obvious conclusion… he didn’t like our editorial.”

“MARIJUANA should be legalized, regulated and taxed,” the newspaper wrote on February 18. “The push to repeal federal prohibition should come from the states, and it should begin with the state of Washington."

This isn't the first time the Obama Administration has campaigned to keep pot illegal. Kerlikowske, who is also Seattle's former police chief, also traveled to California last fall to campaign against Prop 19, a measure to decriminalize marijuana and authorize jurisdictions to tax and regulate it.

Is the Seattle Times the more reticent to speak up? Apparently not. It ran another pro-pot editorial in today’s paper.

Kerlikowske's office has not yet responded to a request for comment.

http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2011/02/25/white-house-requested-meeting-with-seattle-times-editorial-board-to-bully-against-pro-pot-articles

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

JonJon
by Ruby Member on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:46 PM

The Stranger is a counter-culture Seattle Magazine and I'm not surprised at its stance.

The Seattle Times editor convinced the newspaper's manager to allow him to write an article advocating the legalization of marijuana but I wonder if they polled their whole staff?  Is the whole staff on board with legalization of marijuana, or is this one guy skewing things to suit himself?

And anyone who does business with the general public knows that for every one person who speaks out for an idea, there are many who stay quiet.  I don't care for the newspaper's editor's attempt to make it seem the overwhelming majority of Washingtonians favor the legalization of marijuana.

His argument is, "Kids are going to get hold of it just as they do alcohol so it may as well be legalized."  Haven't we parents spent generations arguing, "If the other kids jumped off a cliff, would you do it, too?"  A look at the statistics of how many teenagers have car accidents under the influence of alcohol is enough to squash that rationale.

The Times says it's time to have a serious discussion about legalization and that the numbers of people responding to his column are at least willing to discuss.  I'm willing to discuss; in opposition and I figure that's okay and it's also okay for Kerlikowski to discuss it, too.  That's his job so why the villifying labels?  I'm sure he, as well as I, will accept it if it is the will of the majority of the people to change the federal laws against the legalization of marijuana.

You know how people say the forefathers who drafted the Constitution knew what they were doing?  Well, the guys who made the use of marijuana illegal way back when knew what they were doing. 

This is all I have to say on the subject and I'd appreciate it if no one comes at me with any attacks and ridicule.  The Times article mentions serious discussion; discuss and respect my right to be the lone voice in opposition.

Friday
by HRH of MJ on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:57 PM

 

Quoting JonJon:

The Stranger is a counter-culture Seattle Magazine and I'm not surprised at its stance.

The Seattle Times editor convinced the newspaper's manager to allow him to write an article advocating the legalization of marijuana but I wonder if they polled their whole staff?  Is the whole staff on board with legalization of marijuana, or is this one guy skewing things to suit himself?

And anyone who does business with the general public knows that for every one person who speaks out for an idea, there are many who stay quiet.  I don't care for the newspaper's editor's attempt to make it seem the overwhelming majority of Washingtonians favor the legalization of marijuana.

His argument is, "Kids are going to get hold of it just as they do alcohol so it may as well be legalized."  Haven't we parents spent generations arguing, "If the other kids jumped off a cliff, would you do it, too?"  A look at the statistics of how many teenagers have car accidents under the influence of alcohol is enough to squash that rationale.

The Times says it's time to have a serious discussion about legalization and that the numbers of people responding to his column are at least willing to discuss.  I'm willing to discuss; in opposition and I figure that's okay and it's also okay for Kerlikowski to discuss it, too.  That's his job so why the villifying labels?  I'm sure he, as well as I, will accept it if it is the will of the majority of the people to change the federal laws against the legalization of marijuana.

You know how people say the forefathers who drafted the Constitution knew what they were doing?  Well, the guys who made the use of marijuana illegal way back when knew what they were doing. 

This is all I have to say on the subject and I'd appreciate it if no one comes at me with any attacks and ridicule.  The Times article mentions serious discussion; discuss and respect my right to be the lone voice in opposition.

 Does every employee at every newspaper agree with their political endorsements? Not likely.

Yes, they know what they were doing, eliminating a serious competitor for some of their big money supporters. Did you know that Washington, Jefferson and Lincols grew and smoked cannabis?

I won't bother to engage you further since you have made it quite clear that you enjoy your willful ignorance on this topic and have no interest in the truth, so I won't waste my time.

Have a good one.

ETA: When Cali was working on prop 19 Kerlikowski made it very clear that he would fight it if it passed and would continue to arrest and prosecute non-medical mj users. So, no he won't respect the peoples will.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

Radarma
by Ruby Member on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:57 PM

What do you think of this, OP?

I am bummed.

Radarma
by Ruby Member on Mar. 2, 2011 at 3:58 PM

Hey maybe Obama sent his dude so he could bring him back a lil somethin somethin?

I jest.

Friday
by HRH of MJ on Mar. 2, 2011 at 4:01 PM

 

Quoting Radarma:

What do you think of this, OP?

I am bummed.

 I think it's BS. The people have made it very clear they want to at least have a real discussion and Obama first laughed at us, then claims he's willing to discuss while sending Kerlikowski to bully supporters.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

Friday
by HRH of MJ on Mar. 2, 2011 at 4:01 PM

 

Quoting Radarma:

Hey maybe Obama sent his dude so he could bring him back a lil somethin somethin?

I jest.

 LOL. I wish.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

timeforprogress
by Silver Member on Mar. 2, 2011 at 4:08 PM

I think that we have a real issue with corporate oligarchy.  The Democrats and Republicans serve their only master money and power.   No one is doing what is good for society, and good for the people.

Cannibus isn't going away.  The only solution to end the power it has in the black market is to legalize it.  Drug dealers are already doing something illegal, so they really don't have qualms selling to kids.  As mothers, that should be motivator enough to legalize it.

Prohibition doesn't work.  It is a consumer driven market.  Police can arrest a million dealers, and more will just take their place. 

Radarma
by Ruby Member on Mar. 2, 2011 at 4:10 PM


Quoting Friday:

 

Quoting Radarma:

What do you think of this, OP?

I am bummed.

 I think it's BS. The people have made it very clear they want to at least have a real discussion and Obama first laughed at us, then claims he's willing to discuss while sending Kerlikowski to bully supporters.

Makes me wanna call him and ask for my vote back.


 

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