McClintock Shows His Character

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KVMR has launched a new radio show called “The Cannabis Crusades” hosted by Gaynell Rogers and myself. During our premier broadcast on October 19, we had the pleasure of interviewing Congressman Tom McClintock. Let me preface my following comments by stating that I am about as liberal a person as you are likely to meet and I’ve voted the Democratic ticket my entire life. Congressman McClintock made it clear that he believes marijuana to be addictive and that it may cause brain damage. (I disagree) Regardless of his personal opinion, the Congressman crossed the aisle to cosponsor HR 6335, a bill introduced by liberal Democrat Barbara Lee, based on his strong belief in the Constitution. HR 6335 would stop US Attorneys from using asset forfeiture against legal medical marijuana operations. Contrast that with President Obama who smoked marijuana as a teenager and knows it wasn’t addictive nor did it cause him to lose his motivation. However, he would not be President now had he been arrested then. I urge you to listen to Tom’s entire interview on KVMR’s podcast at, but one of his statements really stood out, “We can pass enough heavy-handed laws with Draconian penalties to make this a virtually risk-free society. Unfortunately, that risk-free society would also be one of the most bleak, colorless, miserable, harsh & authoritative societies in the history of human experience.” Mandating what is legal based on potential harm to children would create such a world. There are many things inappropriate for children that responsible adults get to enjoy - things like X-rated movies, gambling, drinking and smoking. Do we want to make these things illegal because of the potential harm to children or do we want to teach our children how to make responsible choices when they reach the age of consent? Polls can be deceptive, especially when asking about medical marijuana, but they can’t all be wrong and every poll reveals a growing pattern of support across the country. The Mason-Dixon poll (May, 2012) found that 74% of Americans favored States’ Rights to make their own laws concerning medical marijuana while only 15% approved of the federal raids. People over 65 have traditionally been one of the staunchest demographics opposing marijuana in any form, but a AARP poll (2004) found that 72% supported medical marijuana. Perhaps seniors are learning that marijuana can improve the quality of their lives without the unpleasant side effects of many pharmaceutical drugs. It breaks my heart to say this, but the misrepresentations that have been perpetuated about marijuana by this administration border on the criminal. There is a mountain of evidence to support the fact that THC has been found to reduce and eliminate tumors in laboratory mice. Instead of embracing this important discovery, the FDA continues to stifle meaningful research into this promising area they have deemed “too dangerous” while continuing to support expensive and poisonous chemotherapy. Congressman McClintock observed that usually the greater the pleasure in life, the greater the associated risk. Marijuana is an exception to the rule. In 1988, a Drug Enforcement Judge, Francis Young, found that eating raw potatoes posed a greater health risk than smoking marijuana and he had no reason to be biased. Judge Young reached those conclusions after reviewing evidence submitted by leading experts in virtually every field (including law enforcement and medical professionals) about the efficacy and dangers of marijuana. His Opinion and Finding of Facts can be found at, but I think this comment sums up his point of view best, “Marijuana in its natural form is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man.” Why then are so many politicians out of step with the American public on this issue and will there be a price to pay come November 6th? I urge our local officials to follow Congressman McClintock’s lead. As he stated so eloquently, “Just laws protect us from the actions of others. Unjust laws try to protect us from ourselves - and that is a prescription for dictatorship.” If a politician won’t support my rights, what makes you think they will support yours? Patricia Smith