Address of Rep. Gerald
Solomon of New York in the House of Representatives
Thursday, October 6, 1994
"Mr. Speaker, it was recently brought to my attention that drug legalization advocates are using the electronic information superhighway to organize the legalization movement and share information on drug use. The information superhighway was certainly not created to propagate such misinformation and the criminal activity associated with it.
This use was brought to my attention by drug legalization opponents who use the information superhighway everyday in their vocations. Apparently, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws recently entered remarks which I personally made in opposition to drug legalization on this House floor as an example of 'rabid, right-wing prohibitionist propaganda.' Because I believe, along with 95 percent of America, that the use of illicit drugs is wrong, I was singled out as an enemy of drug users. Well, Mr. Speaker, I am honored. The use of illegal drugs in an anathema to the social and moral fabric of our Nation. President Reagan's and President Bush's 'War on Drugs' was premised on the belief that society was better served and protected if our Nation universally and actively opposed drug use. This program worked as planned. The use of cocaine, marijuana, heroin, and most other illegal drugs declined. Our Nation's young children and teenagers who grew up during the 1980's were told and made aware of the evils and the hardships associated with drug use. I fear for the kind of message the children growing up in the 1990's are receiving. Pro-drug use and legalization messages on the information superhighway through Internet are wrong.
I was appalled to learn that this information even includes such things as tips on growing marijuana and ways to evade law enforcement. As more and more Americans jump onto this latest technological advancement, more and more citizens will have access to this ill-advised information. For example, the information superhighway is now available in most elementary and secondary schools and in many American homes. Now elementary students like my own grandson can obtain valuable information about an obscure nation in the South Pacific during a social studies class and then flip a screen to discover the glories of drug use and criminal activity.
Drug legalization advocates from all over the country are using this universal technology to further their movement and deceive more Americans. As Congress reviews this very important technology during the 104th Congress, the use of this service by pro-drug organizations and individuals for the propagation of this ilk must be addressed. As a nation founded on the freedoms of speech and press, the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness must not be trampled by the disease of illegal drugs."
(Rep. Solomon is now chairman of the powerful House Rules Committee, and recently filed H.R. 1453, a bill to strip organizations advocating drug legalization of their tax-exempt status. This action has prompted critical editorials in the National Review, the LA Times and Reason magazine.)