My Statement on I-1068, Which Would Legalize Marijuana

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Initiative 1068 would legalize marijuana for all adults in Washington State.

Marijuana is a terrible product. Other than the people who use it strictly for medicinal reasons, it has no positive uses. People who use marijuana for other purposes are wasting their lives. It has no place in society, and I shun anyone who is under its destructive influence. It can ruin the lives of the people who use it, and bring down friends and family along with them.

I think I've said pretty much all of the negative things to say about it. Therefore, marijuana should be legal.

(Did I just blow your mind, man?!)

Unfortunately, it seems to me this initiative would legalize the public use of marijuana, which I cannot support. It is unacceptable to me to legalize the substance in such a way that people will be free to blow marijuana smoke into the shared air of children and adults who do not wish to breathe it in. Therefore I plan to oppose I-1068.

This is not a minor issue. I am assured by Philip Dawdy, one of the people behind I-1068, that "the legislature will be falling over themselves to regulate this kind of stuff." He says "they will and I can assure you we'd want them to," but that's not good enough. Assurances are not actual laws.

Apart from the direct potential health hazard of secondhand marijuana smoke, there's also the possibility (however unlikely) that it could trigger a positive drug test.

Not until criminal penalties are in place for public use of marijuana, can I support a law making marijuana use generally legal.

Dawdy says our laws for initiatives don't allow him to tackle both issues in one initiative. I don't know if that's true, but if it is, then he should have run two initiatives.

Come back with a better way to protect the public from the direct effects of this private activity, and I'll probably support it. But I won't support this: it's bad law.

Note that I am not alone in this. I was actually planning to support this initiative until it hit me that it would not regulate public use. Then, while preparing this piece, I found that the ACLU has the same basic objections I do. When a conservative little-l libertarian and the ACLU are both against a marijuana legalization initiative, that should make you think twice if you're prone to supporting it.

2 Comments said:

Pudge, I agree public use should be regulated and it will be regulated. I believe you know there is no chance at all it will be left unregulated. As much as our government representatives have failed to recover this freedom they are efficient in the art of regulation. We the people are just getting the ball rolling, once that happens it will fall into the hands of our representatives to guide it. Please reconsider your stance on this initiative, I support Initiative 1068.
"It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon the supposition he may abuse it." - George Washington (I think)

pudge Author Profile Page said:

there is no chance at all it will be left unregulated

Irrelevant. Unless those regulations are in place when the initiative goes into effect, your claim simply doesn't matter.

We the people are just getting the ball rolling

And THIS part of the people insists that it be done the right way.

Please reconsider your stance on this initiative

No one's given me a reason to.

"It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon the supposition he may abuse it."

That quote does not apply, because I am not in favor of depriving anyone their natural liberty. On the contrary, I am in favor of legalization.

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"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

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This page contains a single entry by pudge published on April 30, 2010 8:03 AM.

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