Last Friday, news broke that former UNC Tar Heel Will Graves faces misdemeanor charges after police officers found 4.4 grams of marijuana in a house that Mr. Graves rents. Let your lawmakers know that they should not burden responsible adults with criminal convictions for using a substance that is safer than alcohol. If you are a North Carolina resident, please ask them to replace criminal penalties for the possession of a small amount of marijuana with a civil fine.
Mr. Graves just finished his degree. This should be a time of celebration for him and his loved ones. Instead, he must ponder how these charges could affect the rest of his life. While he readily accepts blame for his actions, he shouldn’t be in this situation to begin with. At the very least, simple possession of marijuana shouldn’t result in a criminal conviction that can destroy a person’s ability to pursue their dreams.
The time is right for North Carolina to take a serious look at its marijuana policies. Draconian penalties have done nothing to prevent use or access but have done a great job of enriching criminal actors and wasting taxpayer dollars. If you live in North Carolina, please take minute to send an email to your state lawmakers asking them to remove criminal penalties for the simple possession of marijuana.