It’s bad enough that so many self-declared conservatives, who support personal freedoms and limited government in so many other respects, are opposed to taxing and regulating marijuana. But it’s completely unacceptable for an otherwise stalwart progressive to have such backward views on marijuana.
Asked last night whether she supports legalizing and regulating marijuana, leading Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren gave a flat, no-nonsense (and no-common sense) “no.” Several other candidates for the Democratic nomination had more reasoned answers, and one correct answer – that marijuana should be taxed and regulated in a manner similar to alcohol (apparently to big applause).
Ms. Warren might want to give some more thought to the question the next time it comes up. The people of Massachusetts she hopes to represent already decided by a wide margin that people shouldn’t be arrested for possession of small amounts of marijuana when 65% of them voted in favor of an MPP-written and sponsored decriminalization initiative (PDF) just three years ago. And it’s not just Massachusetts. By far the most popular draw at the White House’s We The People petition site is “Legalize and Regulate Marijuana in a Manner Similar to Alcohol.” In fact, half of the top ten most popular submissions deal with the subject.
Even President Obama gets it at times: “If you think about the enormous changes that have been made in terms of people's use of tobacco, for example, that wasn't because they were arrested.” Did you hear that Ms. Warren?
If you live in Massachusetts and would like to politely urge Ms. Warren to reconsider, you can do so here.