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Legalize Marijuana in Canada
Petition Background (Preamble):
So if this extremly versatile plant was so useful, then why did it become illegal? It all started in the 1900's, the western states developed significant tensions regarding the influx of Mexican-Americans. The revolution in Mexico in 1910 spilled over the border. Later in that decade, bad feelings developed between the small farmer and the large farms that used cheaper Mexican labor. Then, the depression came and increased tensions, as jobs and welfare resources became scarce. One of the "differences" seized upon during this time was the fact that many Mexicans smoked marijuana and had brought the plant with them. However, the first state law outlawing marijuana was not because of Mexicans using the drug. Oddly enough, it was because of Mormons using it. Mormons who traveled to Mexico in 1910 came back to Salt Lake City with marijuana. The church was not pleased and ruled against use of the drug. Since the state of Utah automatically enshrined church doctrine into law, the first state marijuana prohibition was established in 1915. The other states quickly followed suit.
When Montana outlawed marijuana in 1927, the Butte Montana Standard reported a legislator's comment: "When some beet field peon takes a few traces of this stuff... he thinks he has just been elected president of Mexico, so he starts out to execute all his political enemies." In Texas, a senator said on the floor of the Senate: "All Mexicans are crazy, and this stuff (marijuana) is what makes them crazy."
In the eastern states, the "problem" was attributed to a combination of Latin Americans and black jazz musicians. Marijuana became an indispensable part of the music scene, even entering the language of the black hits of the time. Again, racism was part of the charge against marijuana, as newspapers in 1934 editorialized: "Marihuana influences Negroes to look at white people in the eye, step on white men's shadows and look at a white woman twice." Another fear tactic used is that Mexicans, Blacks and other foreigners were snaring white children with marijuana. By the 1930s, the story had changed. Dr. A. E. Fossier wrote in the 1931 New Orleans Medical and Surgical Journal: "Under the influence of hashish those fanatics would madly rush at their enemies, and ruthlessly massacre every one within their grasp." Within a very short time, marijuana started being linked to violent behavior.
Harry J. Anslinger recognized the Bureau of Narcotics as an amazing career opportunity-- a new government agency with the opportunity to define both the problem and the solution. He immediately realized that opiates and cocaine wouldn't be enough to help build his agency, so he latched on to marijuana and started to work on making it illegal at the federal level. Anslinger immediately drew upon the themes of racism and violence to draw national attention to the problem he wanted to create. He also promoted and frequently read from "Gore Files" -- wild reefer-madness-style exploitation tales of ax murderers on marijuana and sex and... Negroes. Here are some quotes that have been widely attributed to Anslinger and his Gore Files:
"There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the US, and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos, and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz, and swing, result from marijuana use. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers, and any others."
"...the primary reason to outlaw marijuana is its effect on the degenerate races."
"Marijuana is an addictive drug which produces in its users insanity, criminality, and death."
"You smoke a joint and you're likely to kill your brother." ......
With all this said, i think we can clearly see that marijuana was unlegalized solely because of racism. Canada followed suit with America within the same time period for the same reasons.
The Legalize Marijuana in Canada petition to The Teenager, College and University students was written by Jason and is in the category Health at GoPetition. Contact author here. Petition tags: marijuana, weed, legalize, pot, drugs, legalize marijuana in canada