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Vote carefully on Proposition 19

Posted: October 29, 2010 10:31 p.m.
Updated: October 30, 2010 4:30 a.m.

There has long been discussion and debate on the legalization of illicit drugs. I am pretty sure we’ve all heard many arguments for and against.

Arguments on the yes side include: It’ll reduce crime as did the end of Prohibition; it’s not as bad as alcohol; the most abused drugs are tobacco and alcohol; if it doesn’t hurt someone else it’s OK; legalize and tax.

Arguments on the “no” side include: it’s a gateway drug; everybody will be doing it; it’s like drunken driving.

Here is my simple suggestion. Rather than doing an all-out experiment by voting yes on Proposition 19, let’s vote no.

But let’s vote “no” and plan to put a proposition forward next time around to do away with the age restrictions on smoking and drinking.

Surely the same arguments can be made for removing the age limits on smoking and drinking as they can for the legalization of pot.

There are laws against driving under the influence, so they won’t drink and drive. Just because it is now legal doesn’t mean a whole lot of
kids are going to suddenly become smokers and alcoholics.

If they aren’t hurting anyone else, why shouldn’t they be permitted to smoke and drink?  It will, de facto, reduce crime.

We can run a real test for, say, 10 years and see what happens. After all, the parents of those currently underage will be able to dissuade their children from drinking and smoking. At least, it is their responsibility to do so, is it not?

Before you mark your X in the “Yes” column, think hard about why you wouldn’t remove the age limits for smoking and drinking.

Then consider also whose children you might be willing to place at risk. We’re supposed to be a caring state. Show me how much you really care.


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