Sunday, October 16, 2005

Marijuana Advocate Joins Race for Governor


Loretta Nall, 31, is president of the U.S. Marijuana Party.
-- Rob Carr

By Phillip Rawls
The Associated Press
Montgomery Advertiser

Loretta Nall, a 31-year-old mother of two, is running for governor of Alabama when she's not busy with her other duties: writing for Cannabis Culture magazine and serving as president of the U.S. Marijuana Party.

Nall says she doesn't want to be seen as the marijuana candidate for governor.

"I want to be seen as a common country girl doing something anybody could do if they chose to," she said.

Nall's days as a common country girl ended in 2002 when officers raided the trailer she shares with her husband and two children just outside Alexander City. Officers found rolling papers, a scale, and a small amount of marijuana -- .87 grams -- but it was enough to net Nall misdemeanor convictions for possessing marijuana and drug paraphernalia. She got a 30-day suspended sentence, but she is appealing her case.

The raid and the legal process turned Nall into an advocate for changing drug policy. She got hired by Marc Emery, the recently jailed publisher of Cannabis Culture, and she formed the U.S. Marijuana Party, which has active chapters in seven states.

Now she's seeking the Libertarian Party's nomination for governor because the party already has a structure in Alabama and because they agree on a major issue: They want marijuana legalized.

Nall said she still uses marijuana occasionally for pain relief. She used to smoke for recreational reasons, but stopped after her arrest.

"Now there's no enjoyment in it if you think the cops are going to come," she said.

If Nall had her way, marijuana would be a regulated product like tobacco and alcohol.

Nall already is conducting a vigorous Internet campaign, but running for governor as a Libertarian is not easy. Third parties have to collect more than 40,000 signatures from Alabama voters to get listed on the ballot statewide.

Nall calls the number "a monstrous obstacle" designed by Democratic and Republican state officials to keep out competition, but she plans a walk across the state to help the party collect the needed number.

Mike Rster, state administrator of the Libertarian Party, is not optimistic about his party getting on the general election ballot for Nov. 7, 2006.

"It's virtually an impossible task. I don't see any of the third parties being able to do it," he said.

Nall said she isn't dismayed by the task. She figures collecting the signatures will allow her to meet thousands of voters and help her campaign.

"I've got this gut feeling that come November of next year, I stand a very good chance of being governor with the Republicans trying to out-Jesus each other and the Democrats trying to out-socialist each other," she said.

If Nall comes across Republican incumbent Bob Riley on the campaign trail, he won't be a stranger. She grew up in his hometown of Ashland. "I went to school with Gov. Riley's kids," she said.

Nall and Riley may share the same hometown, but their platforms are very different.

Nall says Alabama's prisons are jam-packed because the state's drug policy is shortsighted. She says many of the people in prison for property crimes were stealing and robbing to support addictions to hard drugs, such as cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine.

Prison doesn't address their drug problems, but good drug treatment programs would. And over time, Alabama could reduce the $305 million appropriation for prisons, she said.

She envisions programs similar to methadone treatment centers, where addicts could get drugs in a controlled setting and go through counseling to wean them off the drugs.

If Alabama did that, expensive drug task forces would no longer be needed, she said.

Nall also advocates school vouchers and privatizing most of the public education system.

And she says taxpayers ought to be able to choose which programs they want their tax dollars to fund. On their annual tax return, "they could say, 'Yes I want my money to go to education, and no, I don't want it to go to prisons,'" she said.

What would happen if taxpayers put more tax money into a program than was needed or didn't fund one the governor and Legislature thought was important?

"I don't have an answer for that," she said.

Nall is an atheist, but she said that if elected, she wouldn't try to impose her views on others.

"I'm not anti-religious. It's freedom of or freedom from. I've chosen freedom from, and you're free to choose of," she said.

The campaign for governor will take Nall away from her children -- 13-year-old Alexander and 8-year-old Isabelle -- but she said they are excited about their mother's quest for the governor's mansion.

"My daughter is like, 'Do we get to move into the mansion?' We live in a trailer, so the big mansion idea is exciting to my kids," she said.

7 comments:

looking said...

Thie is great! Finally some sense on drugs! I sincerely hope she'll move quickly to legalize heroin, crack, angel dust, and other great recreational drugs. And lets's bring back some great oldies like LSD, peyote, and those cute little cow pasture mushrooms!

While were are at it, we need to uncrowd the prisons that are full of people that don't deserve to be in there. So let's decriminalize armed robbery (right to keep and bear arms, remember?), elimate any charges of rape, child abuse and/or molestation, murder of any kind (they had a troubled childhood.....), moonshining, speeding, resisting arrest. Just think, the prisons would no longer be crowded, there would be additional funds for other purposes ("it's for the children".....).

And while we're at it, let's legalize porno shops and bars next to schools, allow "alleged" child molesters to teach and help out at those same schools, legalize incest, and allow people of 'different orientation' to marry their dog or horse if they choose.

((The bottom line is, if you think these idiots will stop at marijuana, you have a lower i. q. than they do.
This is just the beginning and all that is written above will be pushed for decriminalization, and acceptance.
Libertarian means anarchy, nothing more, nothing less.))

kirasao said...

I think that you're jumping the gun a little bit, looking. Alcohol and tobacco are both legal and still kill millions of people every year around the world. Marijuana, however, is way less harmful to the body than either of the other two intoxicants (the nicotine in tobacco makes it an intoxicant) and has resulted in way fewer deaths than either one. I must also clarify that alcohol and tobacco are only legal when you buy them in a store, but very illegal if you produce them on your own, or even buy them bootlegged. "Why?", one may ask. Simple: Taxes. If our government can't tax it, or at least not easily, then it's illegal. Hence, we have the predicament our government faces when handling marijuana usage. Uncle Sam just wants his piece of the pie, too. If there came along a company similar to Philip-Morris that would manufacture and sell marijuana cigarettes in fair trade, and if our government saw the potential to reap billions in tax dollars from this hypothetical company, then it wouldn't take long for Uncle Sam to legalize the use of marijuana as long as it was in open, fair trade like alcohol or tobacco. Unfortunately, bringing up this sort of concept to our federal government is like walking on egg shells.

I guess what I'm really trying to say is I believe Mrs. Nalls has good intentions and she doesn't only have drugs as her platform. Maybe she can eventually get a lottery in this state such as those of our surrounding neighbor states. We could use the money for the education our children are seriously beginning to lack. Thanks for reading and keep campaigning Mrs. Nalls!

pamblazer said...

FINALLY SOMEBODY has a brain in this backward state of ours.....in these over crowded jails,prisons,etc of ours many are in there for getting caught with one joint and they get more time than a rapist does ????????? Am i stupid or what?? And the money we spend to feed them is outrageous~!! Please please Mrs. Nalls i will help u in anyway i can to get your daughter into the mansion. i will type,pass out flyers, you name it..the sooner the better. Let's get starter and get your name out there. Call me day or night.......I am on your wagon NOW~!! I would much rather drive with someone who had smoked a joint than drank a few beers....no doubt. Let's get this one started ASAP~!! Bless you, Pam

Loretta Nall said...

Hey Pam,

Here is what I need from all interested Alabamians.

Download and sign the ballot access petitions located at http://www.nallforgovernor.com and collect registered voter signatures so that my name will be on the ballot in the Nov. 2006 election.

Tell others in your circle of family, friends and co-workers about this campaign.

As with any other political campaign we need money. If you can give even $1 that's $1 closer to where we need to be.
When I come through your area in Alabama I will need logistical support from local people.

Please email me at cnall1@charter.net so that we can communicate via phone.

Thank you for your support and for volunteering your time to help bring change to Alabama.

In Liberty,
Loretta Nall

Dennis said...

Looking,

You're just another autistic fanatic who can't tell the difference between someone peacefully smoking a joint after work in the privacy of their home, and the brutal beating and rape of a fourteen year old girl in the woods by a creek.

In my opinion, you're the one who should be locked up, or at least get some Psychiatric analysis to see what's wrong with you. Your hatefulness shines so blindingly through your thoughts.

Loretta, Good luck with the campaign, and go at it with the vigor of a champion fighter with the belt up for grabs. I have no doubt that you'll give it 110%.

And watch out for the dirty political tricks, have a few aces in the hole to throw out when you get blind sided by veteran politicians.

Warmest regards,


Dennis

armymom said...

I think its great you are running, and i wish i could myself. I have no money, but boy could i give them a run for their money!!! I am sure i could get a lot of support. I think you have some very good issues, but there are two that I would have trouble with. I think Grass for Pain should be between dr and patient and should therefore be legal but only then. I think that low offenses are crowding the prisons, and should be a lot of reform there. So we agree on some of that. But it would be a case by case thing depending on circumstances. But all those going to be back on the streets..would get the help they needed not to hurt anyone when they did get back out.
You are right we need someone, we really do. I wish I could find a group of people that would take me there....with all the stuff about raising money....who can take any for funds to run, these days??? I dont understand how a poor person can run. If i can find that out, i am ready for a makeover...and get me to the capitol!!! My name alone would get votes....its one of those that people KNOW they have heard before...and most likely I have indeed touched their lives in some way, or my kids have or will. With a soldier and a missionary, I am one single mom in Alabama that did indeed beat the odds on my sons!! But I gave up alot of my life to do it. I am ready for the next chapter of my life to start as i now take care of my handicapped older brother with dementia. One day it will be here, and i am ready for the makeover to start..anyone willing to start working on me for the future???

Good Luck and best wishes, i admire you for your trying.

Neutralsam said...

1)What percentage of the crimes in your state are drug related?
2)How much of the state's budget goes to law enforcement?
3)Imprisoned people spend how much time on average?
4)Making War in your country against your brothers and sisters costs How much?
5)Stealing time and energy and creating another Civil War, Black to Green
freedom, I still see the stars and/behind bars flying.