Opponents of Marijuana Reform Can't Keep Their Story Straight

If there's one thing we can count on in the marijuana debate, it is the ceaseless propensity of our opposition to say the first thing that pops into their head. This effect becomes particularly pronounced when state-level reform initiatives threaten to deprive entrenched drug enforcement professionals of their cherished authority over petty marijuana offenders.

The latest examples come from Massachusetts, where a November ballot initiative aims to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.

Local law enforcement personnel are sharply opposed to dropping the criminal penalties for possession, saying that dealers who travel with more than an ounce of marijuana can simply carry around less, to avoid criminal charges.

District Attorney David Capeless said decriminalizing marijuana will mean a proliferation of use, as dealers pick up more customers. [Berkshire Eagle]

So dealers will carry less, but sell more? David Capeless's enthusiasm for ruining young lives over marijuana is already well-documented, but is this really the best he can come up with?

It is exactly these sorts of plainly ridiculous protestations that lead one to wonder what the hell these people even want. And solving that riddle becomes a greater challenge the longer you listen to them:

[William] Breault, an activist who heads up the Main South Alliance for Public Safety, said citizens have an obligation to get educated about the issue. He accuses the decriminalization advocates of using "deceptive tactics" to gain voter support.

… he claimed that few, if any, inmates in the state's jails are sent there for minor marijuana possession alone; in local courts, it's not uncommon for first-time possession offenders to receive an eventual dismissal of the charges, with no criminal record resulting.

Huh? That's frickin' great, but if you're cool with it then why are you arguing with us? The whole point of the initiative is to stop running people through the gauntlet over petty marijuana offenses. If some people are already beating their charges without society coming to a crashing halt, then obviously we're onto something with this. Our opponents are literally going around exclaiming that we absolutely must vigorously prosecute marijuana offenders, then two seconds later they're boasting about how that's not what we're doing now anyway.

Of course, observing, as we often do, that our opponents' arguments are just transparently silly and disingenuous brings us to the question of why they even bother. There will always be better things to do with billions of dollars than investigate and bust marijuana users, so it's tempting to ponder how anyone struggling to grasp that concept nonetheless manages to put pants on in the morning.

Personally, I don't think it's just greed or meanness, although there's plenty of that to go around. Really, I think they're just scared of what a post-drug war America might look like. I can't wait to show them.
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

weed

most people realy need it too, think ,get done with their day even the week .i think yall need too get high and leave human being along because i need it too. it,,,, weed... it helps

I'll leave this one...

...since it doesn't actually threaten violence. But seriously, cut that shit out. Do you have any idea what would happen if pot-smokers started shooting at police? Every pot bust would become a brutal affair. Every hippie would be treated like a terrorist and the number of innocent people shot by frantic cops would increase dramatically.

We don't want war in our streets. That's what this site is about and if you don't believe in it, then make your case intelligently somewhere else, so I can link it and explain why it's wrong.

Tax Revenue vs. Court Costs

If some of these public officials would look at the total cost of prosecution vs. the revenue generation from taxation of a drug that is less addictive and destructive than alcohol or tobacco, then we might get somewhere. Take a look at the facts! How many ODs from the drug? Not too many that anyone has shown. How much money is spent on enforcement? Way too much...we're talking billions! What would happen if you just legalized and regulated it? Ask any economist and the answer is simple....the price would fall dramatically as supply would go up. Enforcement costs would go to zero and tax revenue would go through the roof just like alcohol after prohibition was lifted. It's not that complicated people. California already takes in more than $100 million per year from medicinal sales. The estimates I've seen from outlets like CNN put the tax revenue in the neighborhood of $6-9 billion for the US. Add in the reduction in enforcement which costs around $15-20 billion and you get a net gain of $21-29 billion dollars. Of course, I'm just another pothead accountant with an MBA so why should you listen to me??

One key ingredient IS missing

"It doesn't matter that we're right, because the mainstream media doesn't report that we're right, which means the public majority doesn't know we're right."

Well, now this is the crux of the matter, isn't it? What is lacking is the proper interface between drug policy reformers and mainstream media. The DEA or ONDCP trot out business types in suits which gives them the aura of uptight correctness. Local and sometimes national news outlets cover cannabis law reform marches and end up interviewing bonked out youth with dreadlocks and Dr Seuss hats. Who do you think your mother (or grandmother) is going to identify with? We need sober, well scrubbed, suit-and-tie drug reformers with clear eyes describing failed drug policies. Now some of you might want to denounce this as an "image thing". But the "image" war is clearly being won by the lying government suits. Fight fire with fire, I say. It can only help...

Cannibus

Marijuana,does not give you a headache,better than alcohal...Stroke,blood infections ,more than all of your fingers,3 open heart valve replacements,all of this and for the last 20+ years I have been FINE,I only take comaudin(blood thinner) and Medical Marijuana that is it....
My Doctor IS so PROUD of Me

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