Marijuana fear misplaced

Marijuana makes some people stupid. Not the ones who smoke it but those who have a mindless fear of the substance, as demonstrated by the Jackson County commissioners.

Your editorial (Sept. 10) rightfully discounts their expressed fears. It was precisely the attitude of the board that caused HB 3460 to deny jurisdictions the ability to ban the marijuana facilities out of ignorance and fear.

Fortunately the Advisory Committee on Medical Marijuana, on which I serve, recognized that ignorance and fear still exists in Oregon and invited a person widely experienced in the realties of marijuana facilities, Amanda Reiman, policy manager for the Drug Policy Alliance office in California, to attend our recent meeting and explain how marijuana facilities work and fit in, in California.

Her presentation was fact-filled and reassuring for those who were undecided about marijuana facilities.

She explained that crime rates around marijuana facilities actually decreased when they opened and that they did not become magnets for ne'er-do-wells and criminals.

According to her experience, neighborhoods welcomed marijuana facilities just because of that crime rate drop.

While there is no room here to relate her entire presentation, her talk can be seen at www.youtube.com/MercyCenterTV. Watch it. — Laird Funk, Williams

Give them gas masks

I am completely dumbfounded that all our leaders totally ignore that the smartest, cheapest, most humane, longest lasting, most effective and bloodless way to defend from a gas attack is a gas mask.

Not cruise missiles, nor B-1 bombers or B-52s or destroyer warships, not guns or tanks. When will our leaders think outside their war and kill box? Let's actually save innocent lives by furnishing gas masks.

Oh, and by the way, a gas mask can't be used to kill Americans once the Syrian civil war is over Let's become humanitarian heroes to all the Middle East and provide these life-saving devices to the Syrian innocents. — Stephen Armantrout, Phoenix

A constructive alternative

There is a constructive alternative to the saber-rattling by Messrs. Obama and McCain: Spend some money on food and clothing to the refugee-camps of displaced Syrians.

I am sure Assad has some gory pictures ready to spread around the Arab world, claiming to be result of U.S. bombing.

Instead, some Syrian mothers might praise Allah the Merciful for using the US to feed their children. We could do with some good press! — Hans Stroo, Medford

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