A new bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives that would "eliminate most Federal penalties for possession of marijuana for personal use, and for other purposes." H.R. 5843 is sponsored by Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank
and co-sponsored by Texas Republican Ron Paul
, among others. The bill carries a very reassuring title, too: Act to Remove Federal Penalties for Personal Use of Marijuana by Responsible Adults
Over the past few years, numerous states have passed so-called "medical marijuana" laws, allowing doctors to prescribe pot to patients to treat a variety of symptoms. A total of 13 states have also passed measures decriminalizing marijuana. This new bill would expand that tolerance of the drug to include open recreational use.
Interviewed recently by Esquire
about the new measure, Frank was asked why Congress is taking so long to take action that so many states have pursued. Here's his response:
"This is a case where there's cultural lag on the part of my colleagues. If you ask them privately, they don't think it's a terrible thing. But they're afraid of being portrayed as soft on drugs."
Another politician who has never been accused of being afraid to express his beliefs on legalizing pot is Paul, who gave a memorable interview on the subject a few months ago. Watch it here
So, it's clear what Barney Frank and Ron Paul think about decriminalizing marijuana, but what's your take?
David at Paradigms Lost
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