Louisianians Favor Marijuana Legalization, Poll Finds

A poll released Thursday by the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana found a slim majority favoring marijuana legalization. The Public Policy Polling survey had support for taxed and regulated marijuana legalization at 53% and support for medical marijuana at 65%.

The poll also found little support for the state's current harsh marijuana laws, some of the most draconian in the nation. Under current Louisiana law, someone convicted of a marijuana offense can be sentenced to life without parole if he has a prior felony and prison terms can be up to 20 years for repeat marijuana possession offenders.

But only 22% of respondents favored life without parole for felons busted for pot, and only 32% favored the long prison sentences for simple possession, even for repeat offenders. Yet oddly enough, only 47% supported making a six month jail sentence and a fine the maximum sentence for repeat possession offenders.

"People understand that criminalizing marijuana has wasted public funds, has not made anyone safer, and that marijuana is not the danger it was thought to be," said Marjorie Esman, executive director of the ACLU of Louisiana. "Despite last session's failure to pass a bill to reform marijuana sentencing (House Bill 103), marijuana law reform is coming to Louisiana. Voters in this state are in agreement with the rest of America that marijuana should be taxed and regulated," Esman said.

HB 103 would have reduced sentences for simple marijuana possession from 20 years in prison to two years for a third offense conviction, and no more than five years for a subsequent offense. It was watered down in the House before going to the Senate, where it was killed.

"This new poll also shows that a majority of Louisiana voters think it's time to change the state's outdated and overly harsh marijuana sentencing laws," said Esman. "The ACLU stands with the 59% of Louisianans who oppose long prison sentences, and 64% who oppose a sentence of life without parole for a marijuana offense."

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Life in Prison for Possessing the Wonder Drug of All Time

Gov. Huey Long would have been all over this.  Imagine a culture that votes to prolong human suffering and kill people.  That would be any state that refuses to recognize medical or recreational marijuana.

The time quickly approaches when a state government refusing to legalize marijuana will invoke accusations of latent homicidal behavior, a behavior just as common to nations and states as people.

Do American states refusing the health benefits of cannabinoids have a death wish?  I’m talking about the politicians and their future political chances; the citizens are another topic.

John McCain, the original exorcist of all things marijuana, just endorsed marijuana legalization.  Right on.  The South can rise again, higher and higher.  Save a few lives, Louisiana. You’ll feel better about yourselves.

Another homicide, even bigger

Giordano is correct that denying many ill persons medical cannabis has caused worsened illness or death! 

But an even bigger prohibition genocide  is the number of deaths caused by the policy of "recreational" cannabis not being available to young persons AS AN ALTERNATIVE to 6,000,000-deaths-per-year $igarettes, or ten times as expensive per weight as $igarette tobacco-- so that many youngsters are steered into accepting the latter as a "social smoking" choice, getting hooked, buying $3000 a year as a pack-a-day addict, spending $100,000 in three decades or so, then $100,000 to Big pHARMa in a final grim decade trying to stay alive long enough to see the grandchildren. 

As a residEnt, I can tell you

As a residEnt, I can tell you that 80% or so of our prisons are for profit. The state spends about $3,000 per prisoner per year. For profit prisons run their prisons for cheaper, make a profit on prisoners, then take a percentage of that money and donate it to local sheriffs' offices, which in turn hires more deputies and they then arrest more people. About 1/4-1/3 of LA prison population is non-violent drug offenders with about 1/3 of those offenders in prison over pot. With this knowledge, you can then understand that Louisiana is fucked. How fucked? We'll be one of the last states to legalize or decriminalize weed. Big alcohol, private prisons, and the tobacco industry are working very hard to insure that this very drug conservative state stays drug conservative.

Basically, we need everyone and their mommas to pressure our state legislature to do the will of the people. If anyone knows anything about Louisiana politics, that means offer a shit load of money to several prominent congressional members. Louisiana, ladies and gEnts, is really up.

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