The one thing that has been brought to the forefront of Kentucky politics lately is the issue of hemp and the possibility of the "gateway drug" marijuana. There are many variations of politicians. There are the ones who see growing hemp as the free market principles working and that in the history of Kentucky the growth of hemp was fairly normal. Hemp has many uses that would be beneficial for the market place and helpful for the 65% of Kentucky farmers not receiving government payouts:
As you can see by the graphic we as Kentuckians can grow one crop that could do so much for our community (by jobs and product) and our country. Our own government has reportedly been using hemp from Canada and in some reports has been known to grow their own. But, the growth of hemp is a 'tip of the iceberg' fight.
Then there is the Prohibitionist politicians who want the evils of Gambling, Alcohol and drugs as far from them as possible. As if the War on Drugs (which we have spent 30 trillion since the 1980's on) hasn't proved a waste of tax payers money and has ruined the lives of many and throwing our nations poor in prison for very minor infractions.
Then there is our old friends the Pander Bears. The ones who logically should see the light but, prefer winning elections instead of being honest. The real question is WHY as a state known for growing some of the best marijuana against the growth for personal consumption?
But still, there is a 4th politician. The hypocrite. Recently, when asked about hemp farming by the Marion County Line reporter Jim Higdon, Jack Conway responded that allowing farmers to grow hemp was basically legalizing a “gateway drug.” No mention of the commerce clause from Mr. Conway or if banning hemp at the federal level is even constitutional, in his opinion, without an amendment.
This is a point the Capitalist Banner brought up in a blog I think needs to be examined. First off, most teens or people who have used marijuana do not start out with marijuana. The thought it's the "gateway drug" is almost laughable. The fact Mr. Higdon was referring to Hemp aside (which is totally different) I'd like to ask Jack Conway, "What person do you know in your life who has used marijuana that did not smoke tobacco or drink alcohol before marijuana?" I'd venture to say near 9 out of 10.
This brings us to the point, that the term "gateway drug" then must be applied to alcohol or tobacco. Jack Conway's a defender of tobacco and alcohol and rightfully so. He's not supporting tobacco and bourbon because Kentucky make a good amount of money in being the home of many fine distilleries and some great tobacco farms. He supports bourbon, because alcohol is how Jack's wife makes her money and pads close to half of Jack's family income. How hypocritical is it for a man, who makes money off a liquid drug that has only one purpose to get you drunk, to turns around and put the label of "gateway drug" on a plant that can do so much more than get you high? While all this time his own wife is part of the people who produce alcohol as part of the Brown-Foreman Public relations team.
So, Jack.... do you believe your wife should be out of a job and we should close down all the distilleries? Or do you want to retract your statement about "gateway drug?" Because it really is shameful to use a line like "Gateway drug" when your wife works for a company that gets more people started down the road of addiction. I think Judge Jim Gray should do a lecture for Jack Conway and every politician in power: