One Kind Of Small Business Obama Is Killing

Andrew Sullivan —  May 26 2012 @ 8:37am

Capitol Hemp is closing its doors for good on August 1, 2012:

And they're not alone:

On May 10, 2012, federal agents raided the homes and stores of 14 hemp-and-head shop owners in Idaho, seizing water pipes, glasswork, and other wares they believe constitute "drug paraphernalia." … If such raids are reminiscent of similar actions under George W. Bush, that’s because they are. Despite Obama drug czar Gil Kerlikowske admitting that the country "cannot arrest its way out of the drug problem," the Obama administration is doing its damnedest to try. From increasing the number of raids on California’s medical-marijuana dispensaries (which are legal under state law) to pushing for bans on sales of cold medicines, Obama is sadly revealing himself as "just another drug warrior" despite admitting to frequent use of illegal substances. 

Sadder still: All this is happening as a record number of Americans – including even religious conservatives such as Pat Robertson – are voicing support for the legalization of marijuana. 

Meanwhile, Brendan Kiley worries about the rise of synthetic drugs – which are legal:

The funny thing is: these "legal highs" may be more dangerous than the old-fashioned, illegal ones. Human beings have thousands of years of experience with coca leaves, cannabis, and opium poppies. We barely even know what mephedrone and naphyrone are, yet we can buy those at the local head shop. That is completely backwards.

His larger point:

As drug-policy expert Sanho Tree pointed out when I interviewed him for the story on kratom, alcohol prohibition turned a nation of beer and wine drinkers into a nation of liquor drinkers, and "the war on cocaine popularized the poor person’s cocaine, which is crack, and the war on crack popularized the poor person’s crack, which is meth." You want to get rid of crackheads? Make coca leaves legal. You want to get rid of junkies? Make opium-poppy tea legal.

More on marijuana in the nation's capital here, here and here.