P.O. Box 39233
Solon, Ohio 44139
1-800-729-1980 ext. 8143
The Northeast LPO encompasses the counties of Lorain, Medina, Cuyahoga, Lake, Geauga, and Ashtabula. Our mission is to defend, advance, and restore the cause of liberty to our region and our nation through the political process of building membership, obtaining relations with the media, organizing our infrastructure, and ultimately fielding and running candidates for public offices.
On Tuesday, July 28th, our meeting was adressed by John Hartman, president of the Northcoast Chapter of NORML (National Organization for the Reformation of Marijuana Laws), which covers the upper half of Ohio. Mr. Hartman is also a member of the Libertarian Party, dating back to his libertarian beliefs in 1980, when he voted for Ed Clark (our presidential candidate at the time). His activity with NORML occured shortly after witnessing a NORML rally in Cleveland, occuring in 1989. He was amazed at the number of activists smoking hemp at public square, without any harassment from local police! Mr. Hartman was central in the effort to amend the Ohio 1996 Crime Reform Bill, to legalize marijuana for medical purposes, preceding the ballot initiatives in California and Arizona to accomplish the same object. Currently, the Northcoast Chapter of NORML has 550 members, including myself!
Mr. Hartman began his speech by showing the audience a video released by the Drug Policy Foundation, which discussed Holland's policy of drug decriminalization (especially hemp). Contrary to popular opinion, marijuana is not a legal commodity in Holland, but possessing small amounts is only punishable with a fine or drug treatment, and never a prison sentence. Holland's government reserves its harsh penalties for major drug dealers, and kingpins who attempt to import hard drugs into Holland. Eddie Englesman, head of the Substance Abuse Department in Holland, defended their Normalization policy, arguing that full blown criminalization is disastrous for a society which will always contain drug abuse. It is unrealistic to expect total abolition of drugs from a nation. A nation's only hope is to reduce drug abuse and its effects on society. And Holland has accomplished just that, as Mr. Englesman pointed out that even in Amsterdam, there is a much lower percentage of drug use than in the United States.
Mr. Hartman compared Mr. Englesman's policy with that of U.S. politicians such as Bob Dole and Newt Gingrich, who call upon the military to terrorize casual marijuana users. Even though Clinton is criticized for being "soft on drugs," Clinton has boasted of a higher hemp incarceration rate for 1996 than any previous year: 642,000. One lady in the audience criticized Mr. Hartman for stressing a seemingly petty issue such as marijuana legalization. What she doesn't realize is that over 10 percent of the American population smokes hemp, and the War on Drugs is one of the greatest weapons the U.S. Government wields topush America into a police state. It must be adressed NOW!
On August 25th, Rachel Lloyd will adress the Libertarian Party of Northeast Ohio. Mrs. Lloyd is the Ohio coordinator for Separation of School and State - a nationwide coalition of various individuals and groups working toward getting federal, state, and local governments out of our "public schools." Mrs. Lloyd will discuss the horrors of government schooling, and the benefits of accountable, private schools.
Our regular monthly meetings are held on the fourth Tuesday of every month, at Denny's in Parma, (398-7076) on the corner of Rockside Road (Snow Road) and Broadview Road. From I480 turn south on I77 and get off at the first exit called Rockside. Turn right or west on Rockside, continue for about 2 1/2 miles and Denny's is on the right just after crossing Snow Road. Dinner starts between 6:00 PM and 6:30 PM, with the speaker starting at 7:00 PM. All of those interested in liberty are welcome.
Also our business meetings on the second Tuesday of the month are held at the same location and time, and are open to all LPO members.
On Saturday, August 29th, The Libertarian Party of Northeast Ohio will be conducting an Operation Politically Homeless Booth at Public Square in downtown Cleveland. It will occur approximately from noon until 6:00 PM. The event shall be a rally, sponsored by the Northcoast Chapter of NORML, to protest the marijuana legislation in Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, and the United States in general. We need lots of volunteers for ballot petitions, LP literature (national and local), and to contribute to the awesome crowd NORML will need to make their struggle effective in curbing or repealing anti-hemp legislation. For more information, or to attend an exciting event, call (216)-295-0155, or e-mail email@example.com.
On Saturday, September 12th, and Sunday, September 13th, The Libertarian Party of Northeast Ohio will be operating a table representing the LP. The outreach event will take place at the Medina County Community Center, which will be hosting a Conrad & Dowdell gun show. We need volunteers now! We MUST recieve about 65,000 signatures in order to obtain ballot status in Ohio, in addition to educating gun owners about the only party which is dedicated to the right to keep and bear arms. We will be conducting many more Operation Politically Homeless tables at the numerous Conrad & Dowdell gun shows taking place in '98. For more information, or to take advantage of this opportunity, call (216)-295-0155, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Keith Donat||Newsletter Editor||(216)-295-0155|
|Dave Macko||Regional Representative||(440)-248-8620|
|Garry Seman||Media Director||(440)-734-8143|