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Archive for January 22nd, 2007

A few days ago, we reported about how state representative Burridge in NH responded to a constituent's polite email in favor of decriminalizing marijuana by calling him a dumb pothead who should become a snitch and CC'ed the local cops.

Now,
Homeland Stupidity
reports that all the calls and emails that Burridge has received as a result of the coverage of this issue on blogs such as this one has caused him to change not just his tone, but possibly his mind as well.

The Keene Sentinel reports

“This is a learning process for me,” said Burridge, who has received dozens of calls from as far as Florida, Missouri and California. “I’m certainly learning the power of blogs. … It’s fascinating.”

When the Internet storm dies down, Burridge would like to meet with Iselin to discuss the issue further, he said. “He’s certainly a very energized and passionate young man.”

Iselin said he would be open to a meeting, as well. He is even hoping that Burridge might appear on his television show.

“I was just trying to get in touch with him in the first place,” Iselin said. “That’s what this whole thing was about.”

This blog was one of many,
like this one
which experienced the most traffic we ever had due to reporting this story,
and (just like us) suggesting ways people both in and out of NH can take action. This blog, like ours, has many good ideas and templates for letters you can use in the comment section.

Going beyond what is reported in the Sentinel, the MassCann blog reports:

State of NH had a decrim meeting today. LEAP (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition) spoke. Delmar (Burridge) was at the meeting. He has listened and talked to many of his constituents over the last few days and he is now publicly pledging to support marijuana decrim and will vote for it.

Sweet!

Let's keep in touch with Burridge, make sure that this is true and if so, that he keeps his word.

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More to it than that. Forwarding the letter to the cops for the “crime” of advocating decriminalzation and merely knowing people who smoke may have had something to do with it.

If you have other examples of similar letters or email from politicians, by all means please publish them.

By the way, it IS news.

And it’s already having an effect.

Here’s the latest update from Homeland Stupidity:

“A New Hampshire state representative who last week said he would vote against a marijuana decriminalization bill and suggested in an e-mail that a constituent should “snitch” on his friends for smoking marijuana now says he’s open to discussing the issue, after the e-mail received nationwide attention.

Keene Sentinel reports:

After receiving Burridge’s response, Iselin forwarded it to several area officials, including Anna Z. Tilton, Cheshire County’s register of probate, and Executive Councilor Debora Pignatelli. He also posted it on his blog, freekeene.com.

And it just took off from there, he said – drawing the interest of hundreds of bloggers falling on either side of the debate.

Burridge “has absolutely no business being a state representative,” one blogger, MichaelHampton, wrote on freekeene.com. “He’s clearly unable to carry out the responsibilities of the position. ”

Other bloggers offered a different take.

“I thought that was a great letter from a very conscientious state representative,” one blogger wrote on homelandstupidity.us, using the name BelchSpeak. “Writing a letter to a government official admitting to smoking illegal substances is something only stoners are dumb enough to do.”

Both Burridge and Iselin say they have learned from the experience.

“This is a learning process for me,” said Burridge, who has received dozens of calls from as far as Florida, Missouri and California. “I’m certainly learning the power of blogs. … It’s fascinating.”

When the Internet storm dies down, Burridge would like to meet with Iselin to discuss the issue further, he said. “He’s certainly a very energized and passionate young man.”

Iselin said he would be open to a meeting, as well. He is even hoping that Burridge might appear on his television show.

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