Americana: Losing Your Head Shop

Neighborhood paraphernalia dealers blossomed as fast as the drug culture, flowering on corners across the nation with a wide assortment of cigarette rolling papers, small pipes, cocaine spoons, psychedelic lights and other legal appurtenances for high living. But for many officials,the head shops serve as a too-blatant reminder of the losing battle against drugs.

A crusade against the shops, in Westfield, Mass., began when a horrified friend showed some pipes and smoking paraphernalia he had found in his twelve-year-old son's bureau to City Councilor Charles Medeiros. "I had thought those things were illegal,"...

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