Letter: ‘Long, dark cloud’ over Sweet Home


I listened carefully to the gentleman who presented his proposed plan for opening a new store in Sweet Home to the Planning Commission (“Pot shop gets approval from planners,” Sept. 27) – two of whom were absent, leaving four members to hear the presentation.”

He emphasized that Sweet Home residents were already shopping at his family’s store in Lebanon. His desire is to make it easier for them to simply purchase the product locally.

He said they would be implementing some incentives to reach out to other needs in the community. Also, he spoke about the average age of shoppers being in the mid-30s and older, therefore being more mature, affluent and responsible members of the community, thereby putting more funds into the Sweet Home economy.

It was a blatant presentation of the increase of monetary gain at the expense of personal addiction. Marijuana is an addicting drug.

The rebuttal by three citizens, all emphasizing the unhealthy side of marijuana, was respectful and diligent.

Two were Army service representatives, each giving honest evaluations of the detrimental effects usage of marijuana has and why the Army deals negatively with its usage.

Upon returning to rebut their statements, the gentleman gave a cursory acknowledgement, in passing, for their service. He then proceeded to argue that there was no actual certified study of any actual physical damage from using the drug and even the military armed services use it to treat PTSD. He did not indicate that this is a medical usage and carefully monitored by physicians.

He also stated, more than once, “that it has never been researched, because it is illegal to do so.”

That justifies selling it openly to the public without any monitoring? Medical marijuana is and has been used for a long time. It is monitored by the physicians who prescribe it.

The one citizen who agreed with the store indicated that she had a long-term medical usage; that is not what this store would be doing.

Recreational use is not monitored at all. There is a long, dark shadow behind all the grand promises of “discreet” signage and “responsible” handling of sales, and the monetary gain by the city.

Anyone 21 or older can purchase edible treats for a price. The gentleman indicated that the price is quite elevated, therefore preventing less affluent persons from being able to purchase anything. He ignored the potential of desperate persons who would use theft to gain more funds, enabling them to purchase product.

This, then, becomes a larger normal beyond the present activities of theft already here. After all, once the items are sold, the seller is no longer responsible for what happens then, are they?

That long, dark shadow sweeps over the children and young people who are seeking ways to “feel good,” which is the promise marijuana gives.

It is a dangerous promise.

Yes, Sweet Home needs commerce. Any town does.

Sweet Home does not need a drug dealer to build that commerce on.

Bonnie Neal

Sweet Home