This has been a political season of bus tours, from the Family Research Council's "Values Voters" tour denouncing gays, abortion, the theory of evolution and liberals, to the Nuns On The Bus tour, promoting social justice and denouncing Republican budget plans.
Enter the Weed Not Greed bus to promote the legalization of marijuana.
"We are making clear that our minds are the sovereign property of each individual, and the freedom to choose states of mind is as constitutional a right as freedom of religion and the pursuit of happiness," says Weed Not Greed activist David Krane.
The bus is scheduled to begin its nationwide trek on August 17.
"The mission is to raise the issue above the level of a key election topic to immediate health and economic concern," the group's press release states, noting that Gallop polls now show a majority of Americans favoring legalization.
Even televangelist Pat Robertson called for the decriminalization of the possession of small amounts of marijuana in March, saying that it is shocking how many young people are imprisoned for having a small amount of a controlled substance. Former two-term New Mexico governor and Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson also thinks that marijuana should be decriminalized.
A number of the arguments raised by Johnson are expressed by the Weed Not Greed activists, who say about marijuana (quoting their press release):
- The number of neurological and muscular diseases that cannabis can treat is shown in the dozens, including many types of cancer.
- Its potential as a crop for clothing, food, and building material far exceeds cotton's and trees' respectively in terms of carbon footprint, soil management, and speed of production.
- As a food, it is what is called "a completely protein" which means it contains all the essential fatty acids our bodies require from outside sources.
- It' physical structure is several times more cellulose by volume than trees, which is the part used for paper, the switch to which is a step in a sustainable relationship with the environment.
Of course, there are Christian groups that disagree. Writing in all caps, the "Aggressive Christianity" website asserts that marijuana is the tool of Satan:
THROUGH THE INNOCENTLY APPEARING GUISE OF THE "NATURAL HERBAL HIGH" CALLED MARIJUANA, SATAN HAS FOUND AN OPEN DOORWAY FOR INVASION INTO THE MINDS OF MILLIONS OF PEOPLE. MANY A DECEIVED CHRISTIAN HAS LOST THEIR SALVATION IN CHRIST THROUGH THIS DECEPTIVE DEVICE OF THE ONE WHOSE PURPOSE IS TO KILL, STEAL, AND DESTROY. THE DECEPTIVE REASONING THAT SATAN USES IS THIS: "GOD MADE PLANTS FOR THE BENEFIT OF MAN, MARIJUANA IS A PLANT, THEREFORE GOD MADE IT FOR THE BENEFIT OF MAN. IT OPENS UP A PERSON'S MIND SO THAT THEY CAN FLOW IN THE SPIRIT." THE TRUTH IS THAT THE SPIRIT WHICH THIS PLANT OPENS ONE UP TO IS THE SPIRIT OF THE DEVIL. THIS "INNOCENT NATURAL HIGH" IS REALLY JUST THE BAIT THAT THE DEVIL USES TO CAPTIVATE THE SOUL (MIND, WILL AND EMOTIONS). THE DEVIL IS THE MASTER OF DECEPTION!!! READ SOME CASE HISTORIES OF THOSE IN MENTAL WARDS, MOST OF THEM STARTED OUT SO "INNOCENTLY" ON MARIJUANA.
MARIJUANA HAS BEEN PROVEN TO BE A DRUG THAT RENDERS IT'S [sic] USERS PSYCHOLOGICALLY DEPENDENT TO A SEVERE DEGREE. MANY M.J. USERS BECOME TRAPPED IN A DEAD END LIFESTYLE OF POVERTY, DEPENDENCE AND PARANOIA. OF WHOSE SPIRIT ARE THESE FRUITS?? DID YOU KNOW THAT THE DEVIL USES NO NEW THING TO BEGUILE PEOPLE? SORCERERS, SATANISTS, AND WITCHES HAVE KNOWN FOR CENTURIES THAT MARIJUANA IS A MEANS OF OPENING UP TO THE SPIRIT WORLD OF SATAN AND HIS DEMON FORCES. CHRISTIANS DON'T NEED THE DEVIL'S TOOLS!