Elected Officials: Baltimore Councilman Calls for Drug Legalization

A Baltimore City Council member is calling for an end to the war on drugs. Frustrated by prohibition-related violence, Council Member Bernard "Jack" Young (D-District 12), told the newspaper The Examiner Wednesday it is time to consider legalizing drugs and that he will ask the council to hold hearings on the idea.

Bernard ''Jack'' Young
"We're losing the war on drugs," said Young. "When teenagers are getting gunned down on the street because of the drug business, then we have to rethink our approach. We need to take the profits out of the drug trade and consider legalizing all types of drugs," he said. "Many people are hooked on drugs, but others are hooked on the money from drugs, and they're doing all the killing," he said. "We need to make the drugs a public health problem, not a criminal problem."

The notion won kudos from former Mayor Kurt Schmoke, who proposed decriminalization nearly two decades ago. But Young's current colleagues in city government disagreed. "Mayor Sheila Dixon is opposed to the decriminalization of drugs," spokesman Anthony McCarthy said.

City Council President Stephanie Rawlings-Blake was also opposed, preferring to fob the solution off on the federal government. "She understands that the drug trade is 99% of the root cause of violence," said Shaun Adamec, her spokesman. "But it's an idea that needs to be addressed on a national level."

The drug laws are at the state and federal level, not the municipal level. But if it were serious, the city of Baltimore could pass municipal drug ordinances and instruct the police department to enforce only the ordinances and not prohibitionist state laws. The city could not prevent the federal government from attempting to enforce federal drug laws on the retail level, but that would require a large commitment of manpower by the DEA.

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dead on arrival

The concept is not a bad one, but it is being prposed by a fool,Jack Young. Far from an intellectual giant, no one takes him seriously on the council.

What a Concept

As with everything, this has it's pros and cons. I'm all for it but when talking about taking the profits out of the drug trade, who your really taking the profits away from is the government. After all if the stats for drug related crimes is so high (no pun intended) then the goverment is the ones making the major profits in this industry. Might be hard to convince them to give up all those fines, court costs, restitution, legal fees, man hours, write off expenses, etc... Go figure....

drug legalization

Jack has the right Idea, at least he has the balls to discuss the issue, Jena 6, no baltimore 6, six men in one weekend shot to death, let's get serious, we know that it is the right thing to do. Legalize drugs

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