I just stumbled across this story about marijuana activist Steve Kubby being arrested on drug charges in California after returning to the U.S. from Canada to turn himself in. He had appealed to the Candian government for permission to remain in that country, but his appeals were denied.
Apparently this is quite a bit of controversy surrounding Mr. Kubby. His name is currently the top search on Technorati. A lot of people are angry about his arrest. You see, Kubby is not just a marijuana activist (and Libertarian politician). He also suffers from a form of adrenal cancer, which is currently in remission. Marijuana, or a medical derivative of the drug, is part of his treatment for that. Currently Kubby is in jail and, according to the reporting I’ve found on the story, isn’t receiving this medication.
Not can’t speak to the validity of Kubby’s claims about the medicinal properties of the drug, but I can tell you that his situation doesn’t do much to raise my opinion of this silly “war” we’re fighting against marijuana.
Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not one of these people who advocate for the legalization of all drugs. I would vigourously oppose any attempt to make substances like meth or crack cocaine legal, but when it comes to the relatively benign marijuana I just don’t see the point in opposing it any more. We are spending billions every year opposing this drug, and for what? To keep Americans from experiencing a high that is, for all practical purposes, not all that much different from the buzz they can legally obtain from alcohol?
Every year we put hundreds of thousands of people in jail on marijuana charges, the vast majority of them simply for possessing the drug. Yet simultaneously we let thousands of high-risk sex offenders, captured illegal aliens and other types of criminals back out into our communities every year, all because our prisons are overcrowded. Is anyone else thinking that we have our priorities backwards here? I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’d rather put the potheads back on the street and keep the sex perverts in jail.
Does marijuana have medical properties? I don’t know. But I can tell you that our “war” on the drug seems like a losing battle to this observer. I say we cut our losses, stop harrassing people like Mr. Kubby, and focus on some of the more important threats which are facing this country.