In the last century, our nation enacted a constitutional amendment to ban alcohol. Although the law was well-intentioned, we can look back on this act now as a dreadful mistake. Not only did it make criminals out of ordinary citizens who attempted to enjoy alcoholic beverages as they had done for years, it also brought us the scourge of organized crime. We are still suffering from the effects of the advent of the latter.
Eventually in 1933, Prohibition was repealed. But in 1937, our nation enacted another prohibition against a naturally occurring weed, marijuana. In my view, this newer prohibition was equally as unwise as the prohibition against alcohol.
If one looks at the history of this legislation, he or she will come to the inescapable conclusion that it was based on xenophobia against Mexicans and racism against black people.
Part of the reason that Prohibition was repealed was the actions of the individual states. The legislatures of those states, recognizing the foolishness of Prohibition, repealed their own laws against alcohol.
In a few short weeks, Washington voters will have the opportunity to make this the first state to tell the federal government its laws against marijuana make no sense and should be repealed. It is time to recognize that marijuana is not going to disappear, and we must allow individuals the right to use it if they choose to do so.
Please vote to approve I-502 in November. Legalize, regulate and tax marijuana; it’s time to end the insanity.