Against a backdrop of recent national and state polls, it is becoming more and more evident that people are tired of the dictates from the federal government and are embracing the idea of nullification. And nothing has moved states as far and fast toward states returning to federalism and Constitutional governance as the use and possession of marijuana.
“… 72% of Americans oppose the Federal government arresting marijuana users in Colorado and Washington, according to a recent Reason-Rupe poll. 68% of respondents also said the Feds should not arrest those who grow marijuana in Colorado and Washington, and 64% of respondents said the same for those who sell marijuana. All of these activities are still illegal under Federal law, but the citizens of these states don’t care. Neither, apparently, do about 2/3 of Americans.” — Beyond The GOP
And in North Carolina, the numbers are continuing to reflect the national trend as shown by a recent poll conducted by Public Policy Polling, where 58 percent of state residents support legalization of medical marijuana.
So, is the time right for North Carolina Representatives Alexander, Harrison; (Primary Sponsors) and Rep. Brandon; to file a bill to legalize medical marijuana. Rep. Alexander believes so and he thinks this bill is an improvement on the one that was filled in 2011 and languished in the N.C. House Rules Committee.
House Bill 84 Enact Medical Cannabis Act would allow the use of marijuana for medical treatment of such conditions as nerve damage, glaucoma, nausea and HIV/AIDS among others. The text of the bill simply states that:
“Compassion dictates that State law should make a distinction between the medical and nonmedical use of cannabis. Hence, the purpose of this Article is to protect patients with debilitating medical conditions, and their physicians and caregivers, from arrest and prosecution, criminal and other penalties, and property forfeiture by allowing the beneficial use of medical cannabis in a regulated system for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medical conditions and their medical treatments.”
This bill, if passed, would effectively nullify federal marijuana laws through non-compliance with the state no longer following federal marijuana laws. A section from this bill reads:
“Although federal law currently prohibits any use of cannabis outside of the IND program, the laws of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, 10 Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington permit the medical use and cultivation of cannabis. North Carolina joins in this effort for the health and welfare of its citizens.
States are not required to enforce federal law or prosecute people for engaging in activities prohibited by federal law. Therefore, compliance with this Article does not put the State of North Carolina in violation of federal law.”
It goes on to state that physician would not be subject to arrest or in any other penalized for prescribing marijuana, nor would those with a valid prescription for the medical use of marijuana.
“This Article is intended to make only those changes to existing North Carolina laws that are necessary to protect patients and their doctors from criminal and civil penalties and is not intended to change current civil and criminal laws governing the use of cannabis for nonmedical purposes.”
As stated in the bill, this subject falls under the purview of the State of North Carolina:
“The General Assembly enacts this Article pursuant to its police power to enact legislation for the protection of the health of its citizens, as reserved to the state in the Tenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.”
If you live in North Carolina, contact your state legislator. Let him or her know of your concern over the federal governments continued usurpation of state powers and that you feel that this is a state matter and should be addressed by the citizens of the state and that you expect their support of this legislation. Click here for House members contact information and here for the Senate.
If you live outside of North Carolina, still contact your state legislator. Inform him or her that you hope similar legislation will be introduced in your state.
Track the status of state marijuana laws around the country HERE