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Not Arresting Marijuana Users is Too Confusing For Police

Submitted by smorgan on
Voters in Massachusetts have overwhelmingly voted to stop small-time marijuana arrests, but the law-enforcement community doesn’t understand what that means:

BOSTON - Amid confusion among police and prosecutors, a voter-approved law to decriminalize the possession of marijuana goes into effect on Jan. 2, according to a spokeswoman for the state attorney general.
Agawam Police Chief Robert D. Campbell said there is a tremendous amount of confusion about the law.
"Somebody has to come up with a mechanism," the chief said.

Geline W. Williams, executive director of the Massachusetts District Attorneys Association, said there are some "very, very significant" problems with putting the law into effect. [The Republican]

Fortunately, an apparent super-genius named Terence J. Franklin has come up with a theory:

Amherst Town Meeting member Terence J. Franklin, who supports Question 2, said the new law should be easy to put in place.

"Why not just leave people alone?" Franklin added. "What's the big deal? That will solve all the worries."

Now that’s what I’m talking about. Maybe we should let this guy write the ballot language from now on.

Seriously though, it’s understandable that police are entering into some new territory here. Still, there’s no question what the voters have in mind. Most people don’t think possessing marijuana should get you arrested and charged with a crime. There may be some details to iron out, but it’s really pretty silly to act like this is gonna turn the criminal justice system upside down. To even argue that is basically to admit that marijuana enforcement rules your world.

Opponents of Question 2 campaigned tirelessly to convince voters that marijuana enforcement was a low priority and that penalties were lenient. If there was even a shred of truth to any of that, then implementing decrim should be simple.

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