ON CAPITOL HILL
Barney Frank pushes to legalize marijuana
'Criminalizing choices … is not appropriate in a free society'
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link to www.worldnetdaily.com
June 18, 2009
2:52 pm Eastern
© 2009 WorldNetDaily
Rep. Barney Franks
Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., wants to legalize marijuana and has introduced legislation that would accomplish his goals.
"Criminalizing choices that adults make because we think they are unwise ones, when the choices involved have no negative effect on the rights of others, is not appropriate in a free society," he said in his new announcement about his plans for two bills.
One proposal would remove federal penalties for using marijuana and the second would let people in states where "medical marijuana" is allowed use it freely.
The cosponsors on the bills include Reps. Ron Paul, R-Texas and Maurice Hinchey, D-N.Y.
"To those who say that the government should not be encouraging the smoking of marijuana, my response is that I completely agree," Frank's statement said. "But it is a great mistake to divide all human activity into two categories: those that are criminally prohibited, and those that are encouraged."
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He called it "poor law enforcement" the maintain laws that establish as a crime "something which in fact society does not seriously wish to prosecute."
Such legal cases, he said, are "a waste of scarce resources better used for serious crimes."
Especially important is the use of marijuana for medical purposes, he explained.
"When doctors recommend the use of marijuana for their patients and states are willing to permit it, I think it's wrong for the federal government to subject either the doctors or the patients to criminal prosecution. More broadly speaking, the norm in America is for the states to decide whether particular behaviors should be made criminal. To make the smoking of marijuana, whether for medical purposes or not, one of those extremely rare instances of federal crime – literally, to make a 'federal case' out of it – is wholly disproportionate to the activity involved," he said.
According to the Marijuana Policy Project, the proposal "represents a major step toward sanity in federal marijuana policy."
Spokesman Aaron Houston said, "Our decades-long war on marijuana has given us the worst of all possible worlds – a drug that's widely used and universally available but produced and sold entirely by unregulated criminals who obey no rules and pay no taxes."
According to a recent report in Jerome Corsi's Red Alert, President Obama appeared to have no coherent foreign policy toward Mexico, "unless the administration plans to legalize drugs to end bloodshed across the border and accept millions of Mexican refugees."
When Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recently traveled to Mexico, she blamed the United States for the drug war, claiming the nation's demand for drugs and its supply of weapons are essential elements supporting drug lords.
"Those policy pronouncements sounded dangerously as if the Obama administration is setting the stage for legalizing drugs, starting with marijuana, and attacking the Second Amendment," Corsi wrote.
And a recent report in Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin said Mexico's drug cartels may be finding success in their campaigns of drug dealing and violence in the United States because of the disorganization of U.S. law enforcement agencies whose agents are supposed to be protecting the border against smuggling and unauthorized entry.
That comes from the U.S. Government Accountability Office, or GAO, which confirms that "operational inefficiencies," long-standing disputes among enforcement agencies and the resulting lack of coordination are among some of the deficiencies contributing to the situation.