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January 09, 2006



So controversial people like me are afraid to put their names down in the comments section, for fear of what may come out when I run for president in 2024. That said, this is one of the most reasonably thought out, well-rounded articles on the topic I've seen. Well done!


After reading that article I still can't figure out how Mr. Shelton feels about Mariguana. My hypothesis would be that he is in favor of the legalization of Mariguana. I would appreciate it if he stated his stance on the legaliziation of the drug. Are you for it, or against it? Is it always necessary for you to make every topic so difficult to comprehend? I am not attempting to stir the pot, but would appreciate your opinion on if marijuana should be legal or not. Stop writing like a politician and speak freely. Toodles!



I'm with you baby. I still can't figure out what the crux of Beret Bennie's article.

Hey, Shelton, take off the Beret, put down the bone and answer the question, yes or no, no or yes.


In the immortal words of Chong,

We must face our problems head-on,

Cambriville, Massachusetts

The Truth Hurts

Drugs "Mariguana" are addictive. The use of Mariguana which is commonly know as a Soft Drug most often leads to Hard Drugs. Individuals that are interested in learning about this theory can research a theory know as the "Gateway Theory". A substance such as Mariguana should not be produced and distributed by the help of the state. The goal of Massachusetts should be to protect citizens health, not expose them to health problems associated with the drug. Legalizing Mariguana will send the wrong message to our kids. Children should not be raised to believe that drugs are acceptable.

I agree with Mrs. McCarthy and Tu-Ta-Loo, I want Shelton to state his stance on the Drug.

Allan Erickson

I think Mr Shelton stated his position, although perhaps not in one sentence.

What I believe needs to be further stated is that Cannabis Prohibition is a lie and a fraud. In their actions the federal government wages a war not just against truth but against those of our neighbors least able to help themselves - cancer and AIDS patients, MS sufferers and those afflicted by countless other diseases and conditions.

Many drug "warriors" (a term not used in a positive context) are criminals who deserve no less than to face a war crimes tribunal for the deaths of multiple victims: Peter McWilliams, Zeke Hernandez, Donald Scott, Ismael Mena, Patrick Dorismond... ad infinitum, ad nauseum.

The scums of Prohibition refuse debate (John Walters, Nevada, 2004: Marijuana legalization is "not an area for legitimate debate.") So who made him god? The facts are against them, popular opinion (especially in regards to medical use) is against them. All they have are more and bigger guns.

Ron Newman

I found Shelton's essay quite easy to understand. If you want a summation of his position, note the statement from William F. Buckley which he quoted with approval.


Ok Class.......Claaaaaaaas!

Newman, I see you do have steady employment.(interpreter to the stars)

Now, let's try this again.

Mr. Shelton, instead of citing studies from 1883, 1925, 1972 and comments from the late William F. Buckley, could you just please answer the question in one word or less.(and let's see if you can use your own words this time, shall we?)


We're waiting......................

Ron Newman

FYI .... William F. Buckley is not dead.


the author of this article is a journalist whose role is not to take a side. That is what good journalism is a middle ground approach and simply present the material and let you decide. So if the lines are blurred as to his veiwpoint he has done what he is supposed to do. The foxnews channels modo of "we report you decide" is the proper approach hopefull you can simply make a decision based on the info given here and not make a martyr of the journalist

Bob u you idiot is an opinion piece

Ron Newman

Exactly ... and a good opinion piece can be subtle rather than hitting the reader over the head with "I favor/disfavor legalization of pot".

The Truth Hurts

Were still waiting for Wild Bill to answer the question. Forget about the article and answer the Question. Should pot be legalized? I want Bill Shelton to answer the question thats been asked.

Right mr. Newman

That is correct Mr. Newman but the poster was trying to get into proper journalism when in fact the article was an opinion piece and could present a biased opinion.

Ron Newman

The first line of the article says "A Commentary".

And here reads the caption

Editor’s note: The views and opinions expressed in The Somerville News’ opinion pieces belong solely to the authors of the articles and in no way reflect the views and opinions of The Somerville News).

Mrs. McCarthy

Ok......let's try this.

Newman, in your opinion, do you think Mr. Shelton favors the legalization of the sale of pot?

And while your little digits are flying across the keyboard, DO YOU FAVOR THE LEGALIZATION OF THE SALE OF POT?

Just answer the simple question with a simple yes or no!

I'm still waiting Billy..................

Mrs. McCarthy

oh, Newmaaaaaan......

I'm still waiting........

Oh, sorry, I forgot.

You're probably already at the the door of Sauce eagerly awaiting the free food at the Provost celebration tonight. That last toke must have made you revenously hungry........


Here we go with the latest and greatest in this generations Prohibition argument. Here we have the safest therapeutically known plant in the history of mankind and it is illegal while the most dangerous (tobacco) is perfectly legal. It is said that various industries support its legalization that is simply not true. Dupont, Hearst and Anslinger the three stooges made the most useful plant known to man illegal because of financial and racist issues. Don't believe me do your own research and not just the material the Drug Warriors promote. Read Peter McWilliams, " Ain't Nobody's Business If You Do." His book tells it like it is with a nice commentary by William F. Buckley (who is very much alive). It becomes clear because of special interests one of the plants GOD put on this planet for us to use is deemed to dangerous for us to use, an implicit message that we are uncapable of determining for ourselves what we as adults and supposedly free people are capable of assessing on our own.

Mrs. McCarthy

......and you are also free to drink as much 89octane gasoline as you would like...

but do you?


This is an excellent and coherent article... certainly much easier to understand than some of the comments that follow it.

Many of the questions posed to Shelton here are irrelevant. He has written many commentaries before on topics like air pollution and Ikea, yet no one asked questions like "Are you in favor of regulating air pollution?" or "Are you in favor of rejecting all Ikea proposals outright?"

So what is so hard to understand about this commentary?

Bill Shelton

I haven't been coy. We had a kitchen fire (no pot involved), and in the cleanup, I haven't been paying attention to the site. To Mrs. McCarthy in particular, I apologize for not offering a response sooner.

I did not intend to be ambiguous in the column. I’m still learning how to write effectively.

I believe that marijuana should be treated as we do alcohol and tobacco. Put age restrictions on it, provide appropriate caveats about the effects, and tax the **** out of it.

For me and most people I know, adolescence was the hardest time of our lives. When really hurtful stuff happens--and it happens a lot during those years--we have to figure out how we're going to change ourselves so that the hurt doesn't keep happening but we hold on to what is best about ourselves. If when we hurt, we just get high, we never deal with it. We never grow.

Once folks become adults, it doesn’t work to treat them like children if you expect them to participate as citizens in your democracy. If all of the legitimate evidence says that cannabis is vastly less harmful than alcohol/tobacco, and in many cases a medical Godsend, you can't incarcerate people for using it without eroding the legitimacy of the democracy.

On the other hand, by legally regulating cultivation of the plant, you can create huge job growth, produce large and much-needed tax revenues, deliver medicine to (an admitted minority of) people who will uniquely benefit from it, produce 25,000 products within these shores, and reduce our energy budget.

Posters to this cite have cited two common, but nonsensical ideas. Based on substantial clinical trial evidence, we’ve known for over half a century that marijuana is not addictive.

And incontrovertible evidence demonstrates that every single heroin addict once drank milk. Does this make milk a “gateway drug?” As I suggested in my column, what makes marijuana a “gateway drug,” is that when young people try it and discover that they were lied to, they imagine that the rap on heroin, crack, meth, etc. is equally bogus. This is tragic.

I’m not suggesting that people posting these nonsensical ideas are themselves nonsensical. We are all buried under geological layers of disinformation. In my own adolescence, I was shown movies in which the potheads got impatient with opening Coke bottles, broke the necks off, drank deeply, and proceeded to puke up their guts.

There are so many more important things to be concerned about than legalizing marijuana. But its treatment by our legal institutions illustrates, as well as anything, that law and justice are, at best, nodding acquaintances.

Mrs. McCarthy

Mr. Shelton,

You must have some of the best maryjane ever to have crossed the borders from Cambridge to be able to write such a well thought through defense of your position. I say this in light of the enormous amount of energy you expended last night at Sauce entertaining the troops.

Now focus Bill, if you can, on this question please.


It's a fairly straighforward and simple question Bill. Care to answer it?

Through the Haze,

Mrs. McCarthy


'Ms. McCarthy',

Mr. Shelton wrote:

"I believe that marijuana should be treated as we do alcohol and tobacco. Put age restrictions on it, provide appropriate caveats about the effects, and tax the **** out of it."

Please forgive me if I don't understand why you are still asking him what his position is on the subject. I'm guessing you have a point you want to make depending on how he responds. If so, why not just say what your point is? I'm not trying to be a wise guy, just curious and frusterated that you continue to ask a question that I believe has been answered.


Don't feed the troll.

Mrs. McCarthy

Solh...... Your question is fairly straighforward and I'll answer it.

When someone asks me if I'm an old lady, I say "Yes" because I think I am.

When someone asks me if I have false teeth, I say "Yes" because I do.

When someone asks me if I voted in the last election, I say "Yes" because I did.

Wnen someone asks me if I think the current President of the United States is doing a good job, I say "No", because I think he is not.

Sohl, my reason for asking Mr.Shelton the question in so many annoying ways is because I've read his reasoning, not a definitive "Yes" or "No".

I think my request is simple and really, the truth be told, without a hidden agenda.

I would just like him to have the balls to say it, "Yes" or "No".

And Gee.......I have chunks of people like you in my stool..........

Yes and No

Mrs. McCarthy,
Surely at your age with your many decades of wisdom you have learned that not all questions have a simple yes or no answer.

Should Pot Be legal? One could have several answers to that.
a) Yes with no restrictions or age requirements.
b) No Pot is made by the devil and will be the downfall of society.
c) Yes, but only for those with a medically required prescription.
d) Yes, but with stringently enforced age and distribution restrictions.
e) Fill in your own blank.

The world is not always just black or white or yes or no.

To a nunnery, go

To 'Mrs. McCarthy':

Get thyself to a better nunnery, one that teaches manners and reading comprehension.

Mrs. McCarthy

Yes and No....... I agree with you totally.

As proof positive, my hair is no longer a gorgeous auburn, neither is it lily white(and for that matter, neither am I)

But I think you have unintentionally helped this old broad with her quest.......

Notice how you have answered the question and then gone on to qualify each with opinion and or a piece of logic. Let Shelton answer yes or no then he can go on for as long as he likes with his logic and supporting evidence.

And so my time is up on this blog, I think I've annoyed and pissed off too many of you to continue. But let's hear from Shelton, when are you thinking of running for office in Cambriville? And is this the reason you won't directly answer the question?(no trail left behind, Bill?)

And Bill, it must of been a small kitchen fire because you spent over three hours at Sauce last night blessing the multitudes and imparting political wisdom..........

Yes and No

Ah Mrs. McCarthy, you must have been at Sauce last night too....unless you are stalking Mr. Shelton and were waiting and watching from outside all night.

Well, well, that is interesting, I was there too. I wish I could have spoken to you in person, but of course I don't know which of the guests you actually are...although I feel sure I knew at least 90% of the people there.

James Norton

Mrs. McCarthy -

Certainly you cannot be serious about leaving us just because some people are frustrated at your attempts to get a straight answer out of Shelton? Listen, I think you can arrive at the same conclusion a lot of people can if you read and then re-read his article and listen to some of the comments from people on here. I know I am able to read between the lines.

Just because he doesn't want to give a "yes" or "no" answer doesn't mean he doesn't have a stand on the issue. Personally, I know I wouldn't be able to give a clear and concise answer based on a one word answer. But that's just me.

I figured there would be more hoopla over my nastiness this past week, so while I am happy comments were fairly deflected by Shelton's article, I am unhappy that it turned out to be a pissing contest between just a few people over the ability to give a one word answer or not.

I guess what I'm trying to say is you don't need to go on hiatus because of the flap over this article - stay with us here - and continue your work with the Cambriville News. I know there are a great many people, especially me, who will miss you if you decide to leave us.

Just my two cents.


Mrs. McCarthy

Yes and No.....

You know what they say about assuming....

The Editor In Chief of the illustrious Cambriville News has a staff of reporters that cover events like the Provost celebration.

And we all have video phones.......

Newmie, by the look on your face and the number of times you circled the room foraging for food, I take it you were not completely satiated by the culinary delights that were served?

Care to update the unwashed masses on who was there of note?(or that you deem worthy of a memtion)


I think Mrs. McCarthy is smoking some sweet herbaciousness.
um, er, uh, what was his opinion?
Can you repeat that?

Yes and No

Many people. Elected Officials that I recall...there were probably more than these.

Pat Jehlen
Jarrett Barrios - candidate for Middlesex DA

Mike Festa - candidate for Middlesex DA
Carl Sciortino

Marianne Heuston
Tom Taylor
Bob Trane
Rebekah Gewirtz
(may have been more)

School Committee
Roberta Bauer
Paul Bockelman
Mark Neidergang
Carolyn Taylor (former)

Mayor Joe Curtatone

Candidate for Lt. Governor Sam Kelley with his campaign manager State Democratic Committeeman Bob Colt.

Other folks
Many from PDS
Several from PDS
Several from STEP
Ron Newman - the Famous Somerville News Blog poster

Lots of voters and supporters of Denise Provost with no organizational affiliations.

Elizabeth Moroney

I'm sure I missed naming some notable people too.

Ron Newman

So many people 'of note' were there that a list would be boring to read. I'm more curious who attended last night's Less Happy Party, the one at Orleans.

I was too busy drinking beer to think about food, free or otherwise.

(A aside to Tony L: If, as you claimed, you don't read this web site, why are you so concerned about the content of my postings here?)

Yes and No

My second entry in "Other folks" should have read "Several from PDC".

Ron Newman

And 'list too boring to read' was not intended as a reply to 'Yes and No'; he and I responded to Ms. McCarthy at the same time.

Yes and No

You assume Yes and No is a he?

Ron Newman

Guess I was wrong then.

Wild Billy Sheltonamous!

Don't expect for Shelton to give you a straight answer. If Shelton was to give his honest opinion, Tony L would give him a fresh one. Shelton only listens to Tony!


What is "complete" legalization, and how does it differ from "incomplete" legalization? Is the sale of alcohol completely legal? Depends, now, doesn't it? Not to minors, it isn't. Not at 4 in the morning, it isn't. So alcohol is not "completely" legal. And based on Mr. Shelton's answer, it's already evident that he doesn't support the complete legalization of marijuana. The fact that he doesn't bite at leading attempts to corner him with silly antics just raises his credibility. I wouldn't play your game, either, no matter how innocent you make it out to be.

Outa the Blue!

Tony pay ur dept! Stop using Shelton to push ur special intrest. We all know that u called Shelton and told him not to say how he really feels about Mariguana. Tony should stop playing games with activists and start paying contractors.

Is it true that Mr. important led the fight to see that ur were no welcomed at Outa The Blue anymore? Friday afternoons will never be the same without u and LALA Mortadella

Bill Shelton

My dearest Mrs. McCarthy,

Like my wise and irascible colleague James Norton, I believe that our website would be a poorer place in your absence. Since I have enjoyed your wry commentary and sharp wit, I can't tell whether your comments are teasingly obtuse or, as with most us, you have good days and bad days. In either case, I saw no malice in your postings.

First, I will never run for elective office. I wouldn't be very good at it, and the people of Somerville deserve better than me.

Now, I thought that I was unambiguous in my position, but I'll try to be more so. "I believe that marijuana should be treated as we do alcohol and tobacco." That means that I believe purchae and use of marijuana should be legal.

"Put age restrictions on it." That means, as I tired to explain, that I believe adolescents are particularly vulterable to its harmful effects.

"Provide appropriate caveats about the effects." That means that I think marijuana does have harmful effects, as do smoking and alcohol. I believe that we should clearly communicate these, rather than flog boogiemen who are easily dismissed.

I sincerely hope that this makes my position clear. If not, I encourage you to seek translation assistance from one of the Little Sisiters. They have a fine reputation for grace and mercy, as well as for efficacy in the palliative treatment of senile dementia.

Your abiding admirer,


Mrs. McCarthy


I assume that now that the smoke has cleared enough for you to find the keyboard, you have found it in your heart to finally make an old lady happy.

Now, just so there will never be any question as to your answer, could you please clarify your previous post. I believe that you meant to say "the purchase and use of marijuana should be legal."

Now Billy, that really wasn't so bad was it?

Of course you know deep in your heart I was just busting your tiny little nads and I really enjoyed setting Newman back five years at the therapist.

And as for the crack about senile dementia, I plan to call by good friend Joannie G. as soon as Mass is over in the morning. And William, make no mistake about it, I plan to instruct Joannie to beat the livin snot out of you the first chance she gets.And Billy, she can do it too!

Note to Juan and find out where the fuck he hid the bong.........

Yours In the Name of the Most Holy Chong

Mrs.Mary McCarthy
Little Sister of the Poor
Highhighhighland Avenue
Cambriville, Massachusetts

Mrs. McCarthy


Cancel that last request to shitcan Shelton.

Let him use the paper to keep practicing his writing, but DO NOT PAY HIM! Not one cent. And I mean it.

All of a sudden I'm getting really tir.....

Good Night Sweet Prince



Mr. Shelton,

You say: "Because hundreds of thousands of nonviolent Americans are locked up for having the bad judgment to possess it. Because we are spending billions on incarceration, while ruining the lives of otherwise decent people."

Don't you realize that prisons are big business and make many, many connected people extremly rich year end and year out?
Bob Barker of the TV show the "Price is Right" is one of the leading suppliers of inmate supplies in the country. Passing mandatory sentences is just another avenue the Republicans can take to line their already filled pockets. Just consider the prison system as another Dow Jones Company.


Except it's not TV's Bob Barker, some other company with the same name.

Which raises a peripheral question: how the hell is the other Bob Barker getting away with this?

Manny Ortez

Bill's a good writer. However, I strongly disagree with the following statement: " and potency continue to increase, while price drops."

This is heinous, brutal, bilious nonsense. An eighth is up to 50-60 bucks in most places, whereas I could score a decent sack four years ago for 40.

Up in smoke - that's where my money goes.


Mrs. McCarthy
Some rather vitriolic and rather inane comments by an old lady who should remember Prohibition and how it came out. It was repealed not because it was deemed as safer than previously thought it was because Prohibition makes the situation worse not better. Look at the European countries with a more liberal attitude to drugs and you see less experimentation with it in youth and less overall use throughout life. Approximately 50% less than the U.S. 89 Octane aside the War on some Drugs (I am sure you use some drugs that aren't illicit) one only has to look at tobacco and alcohol to realize that 1/2 a million americans die from these two "Legal" drugs every year. More than died from all the illegal drugs during the entire 20th century. As for this country one can look at several presidents as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln all partook of cannabis in their day. We need to realize this war on some drugs is decimating what civil liberties we have left in this country and we need to change our way of thinking, otherwise the constitution isn't worth the Hemp paper it is written on.

Mrs McCarthy

To Anyone Who Still Cares.........(I don't, but I can't control myself or my bladder)

OK my final word. Some of you may have misunderstood the intent of my badgering of Shelton. I support the legalization and sale of marijuana. There I said it, why could'nt Shelton? He would have saved me and you a whole lot of aggrevation. I support it, but I won't bore you with why I do. I'll let Shelton do that.

As the famous pothead Bill Shelton once said, "There are so many more important things to be concerned about than legalizing marijuana." Bill Shelton, January 10, 2006, 11:43 pm Somerville News weblog...........

Take your own advice Bill..... find some more important things to be concerned about..........

Mrs McCarthy

.....and as for Prohibition? It was me and FDR that got that stupid law repealed.

Frank was tired of hiding the stuff all over the White House(Eleanor had a nose like a bloodhound) and right after he and I came back from a 4 day weekend in Warm Springs discussing the war, we blackmailed the entire Congress into doing the right thing...............

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