For anyone that feels that the Obama Administration has been unfriendly to the marijuana movement, be aware that a vote for the other side may not serve your interests any better. Today brought to light quite a telling sign of how the Republican Party plans to treat the marijuana issue. Hint: with animosity.
Earlier this month, we reported to you that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo backed a proposal to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana. Everyone from Mayor Bloomberg, Police Commissioner Ray Kelley, the Patrolman's Benevolent Association president and every single District Attorney in each of the five boroughs as well as Nassau County, enthusiastically endorsed the bill.
Well, that bill is now dead. All it took was five simple words:
"We do not support decriminalization."
State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (Republican), who once famously and ignorantly made the statement "Just being able to walk around with 10 joints in each ear and it would only be a violation—I think that’s wrong," made that clear on Tuesday.
"I've been working in Albany for almost 10 years," states Gabriel Sayegh, New York Director of the Drug Policy Alliance, "and I can't recall a moment when law enforcement has said, 'We want to have this changed,' and the Republican Party leaders in the Senate and Conservative Party are basically saying that they don't want to do it."
Over 50% of the 53,124 people arrested last year for marijuana possession under the controversial 'stop and frisk' entrapment method, were under 25 years of age. 82% of them were black or Hispanic.