Stop Terrorizing the Community

Yesterday, I met with Rev. Roger Christie head of The Hawai’i Cannabis Ministry and mayoral candidate. He asked me to speak at this morning’s committee meeting. There was a good turn out of persons opposed to cannabis eradication efforts by the police. My wife and I went and testified. This is what I said:

To: Hawai’i County Finance Committee

Re: Stop Terrorizing the Community

As a retired United Church of Christ pastor, I belong to a tradition that has long stood for persons’ religious and civil liberties, and so I stand before you today. This community has been terrorized and oppressed by its own government for far too long. For what? For using and growing an herb that has been used for millennia for religious sacrament and consciousness raising. It helps generate an awareness of the divine. Therefore, in the Bible, it is part of the holy anointing oil. In India, it is smoked and drank religiously by millions. Persons should be free to adjust their consciousness as they choose, especially when it entails the use of such a harmless substance as cannabis.

Even if persons just want to use it for personal or social enjoyment, what is the harm? It is better than legal alcohol and tobacco, and certainly better than ice and other more dangerous drugs. It does not impair one’s driving or make one an abuser, or a criminal of any sort, except for the crime of using it. All kinds of persons use it, lead productive lives, are good family members and citizens. I am sure the police could be engaged in much better work to make the community a safer place than looking for cannabis.

We appreciate it when the police respect our religious and personal rights to pursue happiness as we see it. There is no need for them to fly around and see what’s growing in our backyards. We appreciate those of you who voted not to accept funding to eradicate cannabis the last time this came around, and hope you will do so again. I ask all of you to stop funding cannabis eradication in any way, and to request other government agencies to respect our local rule and leave us alone to live our lives in peace and happiness. This is supposed to be paradise. Why ruin it by a paramilitary style campaign of terror on our own citizens. End it now. Thank you.


Comments are closed.