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What to do about medical marijuana

January 05, 2007

Re "DEA targets larger marijuana providers," Jan. 1

Let's not forget that people buying this medical marijuana aren't the only ones consuming it. It is truly unfortunate that the passage of the medical marijuana initiative has strayed from its initial purpose to help those with a true medical need to a legalized form of drug dealing. This is out of control and needs to be exposed.

C.P. YOUNG

North Hollywood

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I question the practice of taxing alcoholic beverages while pot and hash are not taxed, and I question the need to incarcerate nonviolent pot and hash criminals. Both alcohol and cannabis may have some health benefits for some people when used in appropriate dosages.

Both substances are abused by many. Cannabis deserves a strong warning label. The alcohol warning label should be revised to warn of all major risks, especially those that exist for chronic heavy use such as fatal hemorrhagic stroke, high blood pressure, cancer, heart and brain diseases and impotence.

If we took a pragmatic approach by regulating pot and hash, we could collect many billions in taxes and withhold many billions from our skyrocketing prison budgets. We could divert that money to education and healthcare, among other needs.

STEPHEN V. HYMOWITZ

Los Angeles

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