Calling it legal shouldn’t make it so

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What’s in a name? It could be the difference between a crime and just stupidity.

At the moment, possessing a few bits of “grass” can get you arrested. We all know marijuana possession is illegal. In fact, possessing it or selling it is a violation of federal law.

But if you create some synthetic marijuana and call it “legal herb” or “incense” it’s perfectly legal, correct?

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And, if you seek to distance yourself even further from the appearance that you may, in fact, be breaking a law, simply put “not for human consumption” on the package and no one will think you’re doing anything wrong. Correct?

This game of words is being played out all over America, and it’s really silly.

Unless America plans on legalizing marijuana use — and taxing the heck out of it — anytime soon, the sale of “legal herb” needs to be snuffed out.

Sale of synthetic herbs, likened to marijuana, increasingly has become popular, as a way for people to more easily obtain a substance to get high — as if obtaining marijuana is particularly difficult.

The substance is already for sale in our community.

Natchez city officials are mulling a plan to ban the sale or possession of the substance within the city limits. A few other cities in Mississippi have done so as have several states, including Louisiana.

We think a citywide ban is a good start; however, ultimately to stamp out the stuff, it needs to be banned at the state level.

Call it whatever you’d like, but if the stuff provides a “high” like marijuana, it should be treated under the law as one and the same.