84 year old Republican Ann Lee on marijuana prohibition: "We’ve taken freedom away"

84 year old Republican Ann Lee on marijuana prohibition: "We’ve taken freedom away"

"The drug war is against all the principles of the Republican Party," says Lee, mother of Oaksterdam's Richard Lee

LOS ANGELES, CA — With a few more appearances like the one she put in at the 41st National NORML Conference this past weekend in Los Angeles, silver-haired Texas Republican Ann Lee won’t be introduced as “Richard Lee’s Mom” for much longer. The 84-year-old Lee wowed the crowd with her feisty appearances and her call for a Republican revolution against marijuana prohibition, threatening to become a movement star in her own right, and not merely as the mother of the man who founded Oaksterdam University and put 2010’s California Proposition 19 on the ballot.

“Republicans believe in three things: limited government, fiscal responsibility, and less intrusion in your private life,” Lee said in remarks Thursday. “The drug war is against all the principles of the Republican Party. How about RAMP (Republicans against Marijuana Prohibition)?” she demanded to cheers of approval.

Lee explained how, like most people, she had believed her government when it told her marijuana was bad and dangerous, but that her son’s advocacy for the herb after he began using it medicinally in the wake of a spinal injury helped her change her mind. And her role as an advocate for Prop 19 helped her sharpen her arguments.

“I fell hook, line, and sinker for the propaganda my government put out,” she said. “I’ve come to question the government more than I ever did.”

It isn’t just pot, it’s prohibition, Lee told the crowd, adding that she had read Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow and considered it a masterful explanation of the racial politics hiding behind prohibition.

“We’ve taken freedom away from way too many young blacks and Latinos.”

The down home octogenarian also drew a long round of applause when she addressed the NORML Women’s Alliance panel at the end of its Saturday session, reiterating her remarks about creating RAMP and urging the panel and the crowd not to forego opportunities for creating new allies.

Lee’s first appearance was on a panel about demographic groups that have not been friendly to marijuana law reform. But if the white-haired Texas Republican woman demographic is slipping away from the prohibitionists, the end may indeed be nigh.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Thomas-Speed/100000465301077 Thomas Speed

    ” We can now see how simple, easy, and reasonable a matter is a government is for the punishment of crimes, as compared with one for the punishment of vices. Crimes are few, and easily distinguished from all other acts; and mankind are generally agreed as to what acts are crimes. Whereas vices are innumerable; and no two persons are agreed, except in comparatively few cases, as to what are vices. Furthermore, everybody wishes to be protected, into his person and property, against the aggressions of other men. But nobody wishes to be protected, either in his person or property, against himself; because it is contrary to the fundamental laws of human nature itself, that any one should wish to harm himself. He only wishes to promote his own happiness, and to be his own judge as to what will promote, and does promote, his own happiness.

    This is what every one wants, and has a right to, as a human being. And though we all make many mistakes, and necessarily must make them, from the imperfection of our knowledge, yet these mistakes are no argument against the right; because they all tend to give us the very knowledge we need, and are in pursuit of, and can get in no other way.

    The object aims at in the punishment of crimes, therefore, is not only wholly different from, but it is directly opposed to, that aimed at in the punishment of vices.

    The object aimed at in the punishment of crimes is to secure,to each and every man alike, the fullest liberty he possibly can have — consistently with the equal rights of others — to pursue his own happiness, under the guidance of his own judgment, and by the use of his own property.

    On the other hand, the object aimed at in the punishment of vices, is to deprive every man of his natural right and liberty to pursue his own happiness, under the guidance of his own judgment, and by the use of his own property.

    These two objects, then, are directly opposed to each other. They are as directly opposed to each other as are light and darkness, or as truth and falsehood, or as liberty and slavery. They are utterly incompatible with each other; and to suppose the two to be embraced in one and the same government, is an absurdity, an impossibility. It is to suppose the objects of a government to be to commit crimes, and to prevent crimes; to destroy individual liberty, and to secure individual liberty. ”

    http://www.lysanderspooner.org/VicesAreNotCrimes.htm
    ‘Vices are not Crimes’ – Lysander Spooner.

  • jazkeys

    This ongoing groundless demonization and Prohibition of marijuana and rape of our civil liberties has got to stop. Alcohol, tobacco and prescription drugs combined kill HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE EACH AND EVERY YEAR, yet these highly addictive and LETHAL products are not only perfectly legal, but celebrated (how many beer and other alcohol commercials did YOU see during the Superbowl?). In a perfect example of hypocrisy, a relatively harmless, naturally occurring plant with a long list of industrial, social, agricultural and medical benefits THAT HAS NEVER KILLED A SINGLE PERSON *EVER* remains demonized. This so-called “War On Drugs” has failed spectacularly and miserably, and as long as ignorant, mindless, brainwashed sheep are allowed to dictate what we can and can’t put into our own bodies (and as long as ignorant, mindless, brainwashed sheep allow themselves to be manipulated by propaganda), we will NEVER be truly free.