You may have picked up today’s Los Angeles Times and read an article entitled—“Legal Weed’ is just beer, but Feds want to cap sales” by Eric Baily. It tells an alarming story of government oppression, censorship, and wasting of tax dollars. Mt Shasta Brewing Company, located in Weed, CA, seals one particular brew with bottle caps labeled with the knee-slapping words “Try Legal Weed” and “A friend in Weed is a friend indeed” Apparently, the US Treasury Department’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (if you’ve heard of these guys you’re lying) weren’t so amused— they’ve threatened the brewery owner with fines and sanctions if he doesn’t remove the tagline because it alludes to the use of an illegal substance.

This is highly alarming because it’s a blatant act of censorship and thought control. Mt Shasta Brewing Company isn’t selling a controlled substance, nor are they selling drug paraphernalia, or even trying to mislead the public—the caps aren’t labeled Smoke Weed are they?

Too bad the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau doesn’t have broader powers. If they did, Cocaine Energy Drink could be shut down and its founders incarcerated. Not “Legal Cocaine,” just plain old “Cocaine.” Yes, it tastes like liquefied jolly ranchers and tonic water and makes you jittery, but won’t make your gums lose sensation or inspire disco parties because it contains no actual cocaine. Nevertheless, Cocaine energy drink has gone more or less unnoticed by governmental powers.

This is yet another example of government bureaus being hijacked by persons with extreme political agendas—John Ashcroft would be proud. It’s hard to understand what harm could possibly come from the bottle caps. If anything, it will help sway pot smokers away from the devil weed and into the much safer and healthier world of alcoholism, resulting in more tax revenue from alcohol sales and further justification for additional bureau funding.

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