By Steve Elliott of Toke of the Town
The North Carolina Democratic Party endorsed medical marijuana legalization at its convention last weekend, as one of 77 resolutions that members support.
Many of the resolutions adopted at the convention are aligned with official party policy positions, but some, including cannabis legalization, are still seen by the establishment as "fringe" positions, report John Frank and Lynn Bonner of the Raleigh News-Observer. (Frank and Bonner didn't get the story quite right, by the way; they reported the Democrats endorsed "marijuana legalization," which, of course, is a whole different animal than "medical marijuana legalization." Try harder to get it right next time, John and Lynn.)
The party endorsed not just one but two pro-cannabis resolutions, the first for legalizing medical marijuana in North Carolina, and the second in support of the renewing industrial hemp as an agricultural crop in the state.
"It's all about market and cost/benefit analysis," offered commenter "malcolmkyle" on the News-Observer's site. "Whether any particular drug is good, bad, or otherwise is irrelevant -- as long as there is demand for any mind altering substance there WILL be supply; THE END! The only effects prohibiting it has is to drive the price up while increasing the costs and profis -- and where there is illegal profit to be made criminals and terrorists thrive.
"The cost of criminalizing citizens who are using substances similar but no more harmful than those that are perfectly legal -- like alcohol and tobacco -- is not only hypocritical and futile, but also simply not worth the incredible suffering and damaging it causes," malcolmkyle said.
"Legalizing marijuana would be as much of a money maker as fracking, without the flaming tap water," offered the more succinct and jocular "NCYankee0."
"Cannabis legalization is not a 'fringe issue,' John and Lynn," commented reader "calibre." "National polls show a MAJORITY of people favor legalization of this beneficial plant."
"America has experience with the results of prohibiting a recreational drug that Americans have clearly decided that they demand," commented "uBnice." "Weed is here and it is here to stay. The reason we hear of massive quantities imported into America (and known grown in America in suburb houses) is because there is great demand for it in America and Americans have the money.
"We know what happened when America legalized alcohol," uBnice commented. "Most of the criminal activity went away and we generate dollars from taxes. Yes, alcohol abuse has been a problem, but making alcohol illegal is more of a problem. If we do not legalize weed, we will continue to have criminal activity surrounding a multi-billion dollar industry."
Positions also endorsed at the weekend convention include a single-payer healthcare system and the repeal of North Carolina's constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.
- The abandonment of nuclear energy as part of U.S. energy policy
- A request to President Obama and North Carolina's U.S. senators to "bring war dollars home"
- Abolishing the death penalty
- A demand for collective-bargaining rights for workers
- A ban on the practice of "fracking" for oil
Article From Toke of the Town and republished with special permission.