The Alabama legislature will consider the legalization of marijuana for both medicinal and recreational purposes during the 2014 session. If passed, these two bills would effectively nullify the unconstitutional federal prohibition on the plant.
On Feb. 13, Rep. Patricia Todd (D-54) filed HB485 and HB488 to alter the state’s marijuana laws. HB485 ‘would allow the possession, use, and cultivation of limited amounts of cannabis for personal use by persons 21 years of age or older.’ HB488 ‘would establish a medical exemption for the possession and personal use of marijuana’ for people who qualify under the bill’s specifications.
Passage of the bill would represent another domino falling in the federal government unconstitutional attempt to prohibit marijuana. Since Washington and Colorado decided to legalize it through ballot initiatives in 2012, the road has been paved for other state legislators to take action against marijuana prohibition. Alabama is the latest in a growing list of states that are working to nullify the costly federal drug war in various ways through legislation this year.
Alabama has some of the most Draconian marijuana laws in the nation. A first time offender can receive up to one year in prison for personal use. For non personal use, a first time offender can receive up to 10 years in prison. Penalties against the sale of the plant are even stiffer. HB485 and HB488 would change these ridiculous, antiquated laws in an instant, and serve as another stern rebuke against unwarranted federal power.
Congress and the president claim the constitutional authority to ban marijuana. The Supreme Court concurs. But the opinions of black-robed judicial oracles don’t magically transform the meaning of the Constitution. It delegates no power to regulate plants grown and used within the borders of a state. And the so-called war on drugs rests on the same legal authority as all of the other modern-day undeclared wars.
Never-the-less, 21 states had already put the well-being of their citizens above faux federal supremacy, nullified the unconstitutional prohibition and legalized marijuana to varying degrees anyway.
The message? When enough people say NO to unconstitutional federal “laws” – and enough states back them up, there’s not much the feds can do about it.
“The rapidly growing and wildly successful state-level movement to legalize marijuana, either completely, or for medical use, proves that states can successfully nullify unconstitutional federal acts. The feds can claim the authority to prohibit pot all they want, but it clearly has done nothing to deter states from moving forward with plans to allow it, pushed by the will of the people,” Tenth Amendment Center executive director Michael Boldin said.
For AL Residents: Click HERE to find out how to push for passage of HB485 and HB488.
For Other States: Click HERE for information on how to support nullification of marijuana laws in your state.