Dave’s not here

If one thing became clear in this, the RN&R’s first (and probably last) Pot Issue, it’s that attitudes toward marijuana in Northern Nevada, and the world beyond, are wide-ranging and illogical.

Let’s see if we can make 10 general statements to lead us to a universal theory of reefer policy.

1) Sick people should be able to get their legal medicine without having to grow it themselves, which is akin to telling heart patients to make their own nitroglycerin.

2) Marijuana use is rampant in most areas of our society.

3) Marijuana is considered so innocuous that many people consider it a laughable topic.

4) Marijuana is useful as a medicine and a brownie ingredient.

5) Marijuana is illegal with certain medical and experimental exceptions. During Prohibition, alcohol was illegal, although alcohol for use in religious practice and for medicinal purposes was permitted. Even now, children can have wine in church. The First Amendment trumps the medical establishment, so why is there not a religious exemption for Rastafari use of the ganja sacrament? This appears a government preference for Christian religious practice.

6. Marijuana is a more environmentally destructive plant when grown illegally.

7. Marijuana’s cousin hemp has many commercial uses that are verboten under the United State’s draconian dope laws.

8. Marijuana makes us laugh giddily and take politics seriously.

9. There is so much misinformation about marijuana out there that it’s difficult to tell exactly what is the truth about the plant.

10. Marijuana makes music—even GWAR—sound better.

It is time for the United States and particularly Nevada to grow up and regulate marijuana. This state misses many benefits through prohibition rather than regulation. If pot were legalized for all adults in any quantities and taxed accordingly (although once freely available, who isn’t going to grow their own?), a whole new tourism industry could be developed, and if Nevada took the lead in the humanitarian effort to get marijuana to sick people, people from some 36 states would beat a path to our casinos.

It’s not government’s job, particularly in a libertarian state like Nevada, to decide what is acceptable to put within one’s own body, and it’s certainly not acceptable for government to set onerous regulations on medical marijuana when the Nevadan voters specifically and decisively told the Legislature to make medical marijuana available to sick people.

C’mon people, Nevada should tune in, spark up, and quit playing the hypocrite.