Get to know D.C. with our daily newsletter

We dive deep on the day’s biggest story and share links to everything you need to know.

ALTHOUGH I APPRECIATE John Pylka’s invitation for me to “crawl out from under a rock” (The Mail, 4/21), I shall have to decline, for I don’t believe that cavorting in a park and mutually masturbating over the virtues of hemp will do much to end marijuana prohibition (“Pot Roast,” The District Line, 4/7).

It’s true that many social movements owe part of their success to rallies and protests—but 100 people in tie-dyes ain’t going to cut it. Since the usual marijuana rallies only reinforce perceptions that the issue enjoys little mainstream support, might it make sense to explore other options?

There is a reason that newspapers relegate marijuana issues to their style sections, rather than to their news, and that reason has everything to do with this movement’s political naiveté. Rather than creating a spectacle for the media to chuckle over, reformers would do better to focus political attention on the real issues: the millions of otherwise law-abiding citizens rotting in prison because of a plant—and the billions of our tax dollars that put them there.

Until the marijuana-law reform movement recognizes that it is not running a social group, any real change in the laws will be despite the movement’s efforts, not because of them.

Scott Circle