Oh yes, or just say no?
A group of US representatives plan to introduce legislation that will legalize marijuana and allow states to legislate its use, pro-marijuana groups said Wednesday. The legislation would limit the federal government's role in marijuana enforcement to cross-border or inter-state smuggling, and allow people to legally grow, use or sell marijuana in states where it is legal.
The bill, which is expected to be introduced on Thursday by Republican Representative Ron Paul and Democratic Representative Barney Frank, would be the first ever legislation designed to end the federal ban on marijuana. Sixteen of the 50 states as well as the District of Columbia have legalized the use of marijuana for medical purposes. But planting, selling or commercially distributing marijuana remains illegal under federal law.
Last year, California citizens voted not to legalize recreational marijuana use, although the debate continues in about half a dozen other states. June marks the 40th anniversary of the "War on Drugs" launched by President Richard Nixon in 1970, the first major US anti-drug initiative.
One way of looking at it: if we're looking at "cutting and running" from one really important war, why not this one? Does 40 years count as a quagmire? On the other hand, have you ever been to Amsterdam (or California's Mendocino County, for that matter)? Is that really the road we want to traverse in this country?
Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson. He is co-authors with Mary Katharine Ham for their new book End of Discussion: How the Left's Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes America Less Free (and Fun).
Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography
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