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As marijuana becomes less criminalized, the sky has not fallen

Mar 29, 2013 As marijuana becomes less criminalized, the sky has not fallen

Image from public domain.

Marijuana legalization advocates have struggled for years for lawmakers, all other government officials, and the rest of society to take them seriously. Their struggles have been bearing fruit more recently than ever, with medical marijuana becoming legalized in many states, and with possession of small amounts no longer a crime in Washington state and Colorado.

I thought the Sixties would have made marijuana much more acceptable to many more people by now, absent a Sixties backlash and Sixties’ youths’ denial about their drug use to their own children. Even a former Yippie like Jerry Rubin, after his transition to Wall Street, proclaimed that his Yippie days had become irrelevant to him. How could that have been a genuine statement, regardless of where his life had veered by the time he landed on Wall Street in a necktie, rather than to pour countless dollar bills onto the floor of the New York Stock Exchange to witness traders frantically scooping up those almighty dollars?

Why is marijuana legalization so important to me? I only need to count on one hand the number of times I have smoked it, and my last toke was before law school. If I were greedy, I would not want marijuana legalized, because that removes a common category of criminal defense clients for me.

Marijuana must be legalized because to keep it criminalized sets the tone for the overcriminalization in our society, and continues to give police an easy way to be permitted to search cars and other places and people, by claiming probable cause to have smelled marijuana, even unburnt at time, even when only a few grams or less are found. That is not the society that we should have.

Praised be the Marijuana Policy Project for highlighting the Maryland legislators who recently have introduced three different marijuana bills:(1) legalizing use and possession of up to one ounce of marijuana; (2) making marijuana possession a civil penalty allowing alleged possessors to be issued civil citations; and (3) a provision for dispensing medical marijuana.

Thank you deeply to the tireless marijuana legalization activists. Thanks to the politicians who refuse to see marijuana legalization activists as mere stoners. Thanks to legislators who introduce laws to legalize and decriminalize marijuana used and sold for medicine and recreation.

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