California: Cannabis as ‘Civil Right’? And this is ‘progress’?

Pot Use Declared A “Civil Right” by Gavin Newsom

Gov. Newsom Continues His Pot Pandering At the Expense of Public and Individual Health and Safety.

On Friday Gov. Gavin Newsom said at a press conference that he’s “very proud of this state” for going beyond issues such as implicit bias in policing and the “deadly use of force.” California’s leadership helped advance “a conversation about broader criminal justice reform to address the issues of the war on drugs” and “race-based sentencing,” he said.
“That’s why the state was one of the early adopters of a new approach as it relates to cannabis reform. Legalization around adult-use of marijuana,” he said. “It was a civil rights call from our perspective.”

The governor’s premise is wrong. There is no social justice issues related to marijuana arrests in California. A search of California jails and prisons prior to the Prop 64 vote of 2016 showed no one incarcerated for simple possession of marijuana. This was one of the lies foisted on California voters to get their vote – “to keep users out of jail.” And, for those who were in jail, they were in jail for marijuana offenses that are still illegal today including trafficking large amounts of the drug.

Gov. Newsom appears to be saying that minorities and the poor have not had an equal right to use and abuse illicit drugs but now they have that right. However, marijuana use and drug use have always disproportionately impacted individuals and communities of poverty and color. He is now more proud of that.

“‘Black Lives Matter’ but appear to matter less when it comes to encouraging and promoting drug dealing to minorities and monetizing addiction of blacks, minorities and the poor generally,” says, Carla Lowe, AALM President.

Those who use marijuana have higher rates of:
• Dropping out of high school and college and lower grades. 
• Poverty and lower income. 
• Arrests and arrests for marijuana offenses are actually increasing after “legalization” as there are still laws that can be broken related to marijuana. 
• Moving on to other drugs. 

Scott Chipman, Vice President AALM, suggests to governor Newsom, “The civil rights he should be protecting are those of being able to live in a safe and sane community, raise children free from drug dealers, drugs and addiction, and drive on streets without impaired drivers.”

Paraphrasing Charlie Rangel in the 1990’s, allowing drug dealers and promoting drug use is nothing less than genocide in minority communities. “We should not allow people to be able to distribute this poison without fear that they might be arrested and put in jail,” he said.

Media Contacts

Southern California, Scott Chipman 619 990 7480 [email protected]
Northern California, Carla Lowe 916 708 4111 [email protected]

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