Sun Jul 15, 2012, 01:17 PM
RainDog (28,784 posts)
What the End of Prohibition May Look Like
At the beginning of the 21st Century, America seems poised to make a serious change in our State and National policies surrounding the use and distribution marijuana. For the first time, a majority of the American public supports not just the decriminalization of marijuana or the medical use of marijuana, but full legalization, including new regulations to allow state governments to tax marijuana sales.
Yet, like in many other areas of the law, the federal government remains behind the times in matching the changes state governments have implemented. So far, seven states have decriminalized possession of small amounts of marijuana for recreational use, and sixteen more, as well as the District of Columbia, have legalized
marijuana for medicinal purposes.Some of these laws have been crafted and passed by state legislatures, but most have been enacted through popular referenda.Popular referenda are allowed in 23 states and currently appear to provide the most successful method of achieving marijuana reform at the state level.
...The CSA is the principal legal means by which the federal government continues to enforce prohibition, but it does not explain why the federal government has the power to wage the war on drugs. It should be remembered that prior to the 1930‟s, the federal government required a Constitutional Amendment to implement a national prohibition of an intoxicating product. At the core of the federal government‟s current power in this sphere lie the legal doctrines of preemption and federal supremacy. To determine why the federal government has the right to interfere with any state‟s administration of its own medical marijuana laws and to prohibit marijuana at the national level, we must look to three specific provisions of the Constitution: the Commerce Clause, the Supremacy Clause, and the Necessary and Proper Clause.
These three clauses, when interpreted together, have provided the federal government with the power to implement many of the most important pieces of federal legislation since the end of the 1930‟s, such as the “New Deal” under President Roosevelt, as well as early progressive laws such as the Sherman Anti-Trust Act.As far as marijuana reform is concerned, however, this expansive federal power has provided the federal government a justification, and the power, to enforce national prohibition...
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Response to RainDog (Original post)
Tue Jul 17, 2012, 11:56 PM
felix_numinous (3,876 posts)
1. I have been interested in herbology
for many decades, and have looked upon cannabis as a beneficial herb. The way that I envision a healthy society, is that people have an opportunity to learn how to have a healthy relationship with drugs and herbs. Not everyone is willing or able to do this, but it needs to be taught as a social norm.
When we as humans have a healthy attitude toward pleasure, celebration, and relaxation--(which IS the pursuit of happiness), this part of our lives is not repressed. We don't have to sneak in the back room for a puff, which in itself is pretty unbalanced when you think about it.
As I wrote to my representative about this subject (of legalization), we need to create a vision of what responsible usage looks like. What does responsible drinking look like? What does responsible drug use look like, and work from there. While none of us wants our pilot or surgeon to be stoned, we still want to have the freedom to be able to relax in our spare time and have fun. We want our children to develop heathy social habits based on trust and a sense of self respect.
But what has happened in our society, is that repression and prohibition has CREATED it's direct opposite--a counter culture, which is in itself just a beginning of a movement toward a balanced state. Our society is not in balance until the laws reflect what society wants and needs.
I think it is very important to hold a vision of what the end of prohibition will look like, and to keep the discussion of this alive until we have reached a state of greater harmony with the natural world, and our natural selves.