Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Legislators aim to snuff out penalties for marijuana


The U.S. should stop arresting responsible marijuana users, Rep. Barney Frank said Wednesday, announcing a proposal to end federal penalties for Americans carrying fewer than 100 grams, almost a quarter-pound, of the substance.

Rep. Barney Frank's bill would radically curb federal penalties for personal marijuana use.

Current laws targeting marijuana users place undue burdens on law enforcement resources, punish ill Americans whose doctors have prescribed the substance and unfairly affect African-Americans, said Frank, flanked by legislators and representatives from advocacy groups.

"The vast amount of human activity ought to be none of the government's business," Frank said on Capitol Hill. "I don't think it is the government's business to tell you how to spend your leisure time."

The Massachusetts Democrat and his supporters emphasized that only the use -- and not the abuse -- of marijuana would be decriminalized if the resolution resulted in legislation.

This is the most sensible thing I have heard out of our congress in a long, long time. Quite possibly ever.

Watch the video

1 comment:

Mark said...

While I'm not sure this will pass, (I really hope it does,) this is a very big step in the right direction. If it fails, I'm sure there will be more attempts along these lines. It doesn't seem all that long ago that lawmakers trying to put this sort of legislation through would be committing political suicide. Now Cannabis is becoming more and more acceptiable with the public. More people's eyes are being open to the fact that prohibition is far more harmful then drug use itself. Hopefully, as some of the older prohibitionist lawmakers get to the age where they either die or have to retire, we can get some younger and more rational people in office. Of course the voters can speed this process up as well.