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USA - NORML's Open-Letter to VP-Elect Pence - Subject: US Marijuana Policy Going Forward

Discussion in 'Article Archive' started by Beenthere2Hippie, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. Beenthere2Hippie

    Beenthere2Hippie The Constant Optimist Palladium Member

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    [​IMG]National NORML, Michigan NORML and dozens of other state and local chapters have released an open letter to Vice President-Elect Pence seeking clarity and common sense from the incoming administration regarding marijuana policy.

    During the campaign, President-Elect Trump, on multiple occasions, has voiced support for allowing states to move forward with medical and recreational marijuana laws if they chose to do so. Yet his nomination of Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions to be the next Attorney General, who infamously stated that “good people don’t use marijuana” during a Senate hearing in 2016, the administration is currently sending mixed messages in regards to the future of marijuana law reform under the incoming administration.

    In keeping with President-Elect Trump’s message of economic growth, the marijuana advocacy groups wrote: “Voters are less and less convinced that cannabis is a criminal problem and no longer want their hard earned tax dollars used to arrest and prosecute non-violent users or entrepreneurs and employees of state licensed cannabis businesses.”

    The letter, co-signed by over 50 NORML chapters throughout the country as well as the national organization, represents tens-of-thousands of advocates for cannabis reform.

    “As a Michigan resident, I know that Mr. Trump would not have won my state had he campaigned on the continued criminalization of responsible marijuana users,” said Brad Forrester, Communications Director of Michigan NORML, “as the transition Chairman and soon to be Vice President, Mr. Pence has an enormous responsibility to his voters and the American people to support federal policy that respects adults to make their own decisions.”

    National NORML recently released a petition to President-Elect Trump with a similar request for marijuana clarity with the letter reading “On behalf of the millions of loyal Americans who use marijuana, we hope he will respect the right of states to determine their own marijuana policy, as you advocated in your campaign. Can you clarify whether you will support states’ rights and allow states that chose to reform their laws to do so or will you use the force of the federal government to interfere with or shut down these programs?”

    The three biggest winners on election night were Donald Trump, Mike Pence, and marijuana. Given the broad support for marijuana reform across essentially all demographics, the Trump-Pence administration would be wise to allow states to continue to set their own marijuana policies without fear of federal intervention. This is not just good policy, it’s good politics.

    Click here to co-sign the letter.



    Below is the full text of the letter sent to Vice President-Elect Pence

    ____________________​


    Trump Transition Team
    Chairman Mike Pence
    1717 Pennsylvania Avenue
    Washington D.C, United States

    December 20, 2016

    Vice President-Elect Mike Pence,

    American drug policy is at an important crossroads and the incoming Trump/Pence Administration will inherit an unprecedented schism between state and federal law in regards to the regulation and enforcement of cannabis statutes.

    Where will the new administration take cannabis policy? President-Elect Trump has said he supports medicinal cannabis and states’ rights to set their own policies without interference by the federal government while on the campaign trail. Now that you both are about to assume office, we ask for clarity regarding the new administration’s plans.

    Currently, twenty-one states have legalized cannabis for medicinal purposes with a combined population of over 123 million people, fifteen states have enacted CBD cannabis oil laws with a combined population of over 97 million people, and eight states plus the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis for adult consumption with a combined population of over 67 million people.

    Only six states still reflect the federal prohibition of cannabis, composing just 11% of the U.S. population.

    However, recent cabinet appointments have sent shockwaves through patient communities, emerging industries, and responsible private citizens as many of the recent nominations that have been selected are historic opponents to cannabis law reform. In order to maintain economic stability in a rapidly growing market, the country would benefit from the Trump/Pence Administration articulating its priorities for future cannabis policy in a manner that respects state autonomy as guided by the 10th amendment of the US Constitution.

    National NORML, Michigan NORML, and the undersigned chapters request that the incoming administration meet with advocates from a cross section of the cannabis community in order to formulate workable policies that reflect the popular will of independent states and protect responsible consumers of cannabis within the parameters of enacted state policies.

    The 2016 election was a watershed moment for cannabis reform as it was for the Trump/Pence Presidential ticket. Voters from across the country responded favorably to both the Trump/Pence message of law and order and the message for cannabis reforms that stop the arrests of ordinary cannabis consumers. Voters are less and less convinced that cannabis is a criminal problem and no longer want their hard earned tax dollars used to arrest and prosecute non-violent consumers or entrepreneurs and employees of state licensed cannabis businesses.

    Voters recognize that local resources should be devoted to addressing crimes that adversely affect their communities ranging from burglars and identity thieves to murderers and terrorists. Now more than ever, Americans want law enforcement officers to focus on issues that are truly a threat to public safety, not enforce the outdated prohibition of marijuana at the cost to responsible citizens and businesses.

    Respectfully,

    The Michigan NORML Board of Directors and The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws

    Also endorsed by the following NORML chapters: Aiken (SC) NORML, Arizona NORML, Ball State (IN) NORML, Benzie County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Berrien County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Calhoun County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, California NORML, Central Florida NORML, Central Ohio NORML, Charlotte (NC) NORML, Columbia (SC) NORML, Connecticut NORML, Delaware NORML, Denver (CO) NORML, El Paso (TX) NORML, Empire State (NY) NORML, Florida NORML, Greater St. Louis NORML, Harrisonburg (VA) NORML, Humboldt (CA) NORML, Illinois NORML, Indiana NORML, Jackson County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Kalkaska County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Los Angeles (CA) NORML, Las Vegas (NV) NORML, Low Country (SC) NORML, Macomb County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Madison (WI) NORML, Maryland NORML, Eastern Shore Miami (FL) NORML, MN NORML, Monterey County (CA) NORML, NC NORML, NC NORML of the Triad, NM NORML, North Central Ohio NORML, Northeast Indiana NORML, Northeast Lower Peninsula sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Northern Wisconsin NORML, Northwest Indiana NORML, Oakland County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Ohio NORML, Pittsburgh (PA) NORML, Purdue (IN) NORML, Purdue Northwest (IN) NORML, Santa Cruz (CA) NORML, Shiawassee County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML San Luis Obispo (CA) NORML, Stanislaus (CA) NORML, Washington NORML, Washtenaw County sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Wayne State Law Students sub-chapter of Michigan NORML, Western New York NORML, and Wyoming NORML



    By Justin Straical - NORML/Dec. 20, 2016
    [DLMURL]http://blog.norml.org/2016/12/20/norml-releases-open-letter-to-vice-president-elect-mike-pence-on-marijuana-policy/[/URL]
    Photo: 1-Civilized; 2-NORML
    Newshawk Crew
     

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    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 10, 2017
  2. aemetha

    aemetha Insomniac Member Silver Member Donating Member

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    Re: NORML's Open-Letter to VP-Elect Pence - Subject: US Marijuana Policy Going Forwar

    Is that an unprecedented schism, or an unpresidented schism?

    I'm not really sure if this is a good idea, or poking the bear to be honest. They aren't talking about it right now, so perhaps it would have been better to keep their heads down and pretend there's nothing to see for the time being.
     
  3. Beenthere2Hippie

    Beenthere2Hippie The Constant Optimist Palladium Member

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    Re: NORML's Open-Letter to VP-Elect Pence - Subject: US Marijuana Policy Going Forwar

    Opinions, it seems, are like navels: we all having at least one. ;)

    I myself think it a smart and assertive move, since little good has ever comes from sticking one's head in the sand on an issue as blatant and ripe for confrontation as this one: there's an elephant in the room, shitting giant piles on the rug, and we're running out of foot-room, so it's time to confront the issue like educated grown-ups.

    I think it imperative that all people, organizations and groups in favor of the voluminous, recent "yes" cannabis votes throughout the US states (to legalize medical and/or recreational cannabis) stand united on the side of the November vote - and un-movingly in the shadow of the power of state law - the true reflection of what We, the People, decided in November rather than for us all to wait for the inevitable hand of the federal government to come swooping in and make decisions for us if we cannot - or seem we will not.

    In the US, claiming state power (traditionally a conservative tactic) is a huge part of our political mix, and so federal power alone will never change the percentage of US citizens who voted in favor of cannabis legalization.

    It ought to be an interesting test of the industry and our country's future and Americans' true level of personal freedoms.
     
  4. aemetha

    aemetha Insomniac Member Silver Member Donating Member

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    Re: NORML's Open-Letter to VP-Elect Pence - Subject: US Marijuana Policy Going Forwar

    Heh, well honestly, I meant it when I said I wasn't sure. I'm quite literally on the fence with this one. I will however of course climb down from the fence on the last day and loudly proclaim I am right, just as soon as I check the weather forecast ;).