Legalizing marijuana: Sensible steps
The rising tide of common sense regarding marijuana has reached Capitol Hill, where two new House bills bring America closer than ever to the flat-out federal legalization, taxation and regulation that individual liberty and scientific validity dictate.
Colorado Democrat Rep. Jared Polis' Ending Marijuana Prohibition Act would enable states to set their own marijuana policies without federal intervention, The Daily Caller reports. The feds' scientifically bogus classification of marijuana as being as dangerous as heroin would end; regulation would shift from the Drug Enforcement Administration to the renamed Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Marijuana and Firearms.
Another bill, introduced by Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., calls for a 50-percent excise tax on growers' “first sales” of marijuana to retailers, plus other taxes like those on alcohol and tobacco — substances that cause demonstrably more societal harm. He estimates 10-year law-enforcement cost savings of $100 billion.
With 58 percent of Americans favoring legalization in a late-2012 poll, possession decriminalized to the equivalent of a traffic ticket in 15 states, medical marijuana laws in 18 states and D.C., and Colorado and Washington state voters legalizing recreational use, the day when Uncle Sam gets out of the people's way on this issue is long overdue.
The groundswell of popular support for sensible marijuana policy makes clear that federal legalization is a question of “when,” not “if” — and that other bills will succeed should these two fail.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Recasting the EPA: Devolving power to the states
- Another carbon credit scheme
- School funding canard: Money isn’t the answer
- Another LCB fumble: The status-quo stupor
- Public records: Updates needed
- Rick Perry’s indictment: The real abuse
- Greensburg Laurels & Lances
- Tuesday essay: Sophie