Sep 172015
 September 17, 2015
bernie sanders marijuana

(image via Wikipedia)

Many marijuana activists have been waiting for Bernie Sanders to talk more about his stance on marijuana policy. I know I have been. We all know that he is more progressive on marijuana policy than most, and has made many comments about non-legalization policy issues, but has yet to come out with a fully endorsed plan for legalization. Bernie Sanders recently did an interview on public television on a show called Little Village. During the interview Bernie Sanders was specifically asked about marijuana policy, and had the following to say, via Raw Story:

One of the things that hasn’t been spoken about a great deal so far in the race for 2016, is the decriminalization of marijuana, said Walker. “Do you have a policy position on that?” he asked Sanders.

“My home state of Vermont has decriminalized marijuana and I support that,” the senator said. “In other words, if you are possessing a small amount of marijuana it should not be a criminal offense, it will be civil, and you might have to pay a fine on that.”

“I support marijuana use for medical purposes,” Sanders continued, “and we’re exploring the pluses and minuses — of which there are both — of moving more aggressively on that issue.”

“Do you believe that it is the purview of the federal government to legislate the criminalization of marijuana?” Walker asked.

“What the federal government can do is say to the state of Colorado that if you choose to vote to legalize marijuana, we will allow you to do that without restrictions,” said Sanders.

“As I understand it,” he said, “in Colorado, people who run marijuana shops can’t put their money in banks, for example. That’s a violation of federal law. So I think there are things that the federal government can do that would make it easier for states that want to go in that direction to be able to do so.”

“Would you be in favor of having the federal government be more active in moving in that direction?” Walker said.

“That’s something we’ll have more to say about,” said Sanders. “It’s a very good question and it’s a fair question. Let me not jump on what I want to be more thoughtful about in the coming weeks and months.”

I know that a lot of people are wanting Bernie Sanders to just get on with the legalization plan already, but I think that in the grand scheme of things Bernie Sanders is going about it the right way. As I said in a previous article, if he just says ‘legalize it,’ many swing voters will not take his policy position seriously since ‘legalization’ is such a trigger word to so many people. But if he gets everyone on the record as supporting no brainer things like criminal justice reform, racial justice reform, income inequality reform, and many other issues, then he can say ‘now that we can agree that we all support those things, there is one common public policy issue that is found in all of those things – ending cannabis prohibition.’ I think that approach will be much more effective in the long run, and I think so does Bernie Sanders and his campaign, which is why he made the last comment listed in the quotes above. What do TWB readers think? Below is video of the interview:

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  132 Responses to “Bernie Sanders Talks About Medical Marijuana, Decriminalization, Banking, And Legalization”

  1.  

    Political posturing, Dont hate the playas , hate the game
    If people voted for Obama because he is black
    People will vote for a cannabis friendly
    Candidate.
    Considering half the people in this country have the attention span of a Twitter vine
    This will help him win!
    Feel it?
    The Bern

  2.  

    THIS YEAR1.6 MILLION AMERICANS WILL BE DIAGNOSED WITH CANCER.
    HALF OF THEM WILL EVENTUALLY DIE OF IT.
    YOU COULD BE NEXT.

    Every American Cancer Patient deserves safe, legal, access to Medical Marijuana.
    Every. Single. One.

  3.  

    Don’t wait until you are diagnosed with Cancer to work to get Marijuana taken off of Schedule 1.
    By then it will be too late for you.

    •  

      My only brother (44) is dying from Spindle Cell Melanoma. He has never touched pot. I told him to try it, I’m the only one out of 5 of us who uses it. He refused to even try CBD, etc. He DID go thru 5 pharma trials and 3 years later, no success just alot of side effects. I really wish he had at least tried a natural approach. His excuse was he was in fear they would jail him and he’d lose his 4 kids. We ALL going to lose him now. I’m voting Bernie Sanders and am tired of living in fear of getting busted for trusting nature. FeelTheBern

      •  

        I remember the great promise of Obama. He has done very little for the MJ users and sold out on nearly everything else. His great health care effort was a sell out to the insurance companies. His getting us out of Iraq has meant more war not less.

        But of course Bern will be different.

        I’ve decided I’m voting for a crook. At least we will get an honest politician. Because as my grand pappy always used to say, “They are ALL crooks.”

        •  

          Who mentioned Obama? Oh, you did. Irrelevant to my post, but whatever.. on that I respond:
          Bernie voted against the Iraq war, which the War Pigs insisted on going into ,hence destabilizing the area even more!
          Vote for your crook, it’s your vote.

          I’m voting for the truly honest candidate, no crook, no Super PACs, working for the American people against Corporations that buy politicians and sell out our rights, doing REAL work for Veterans. Bernie Sanders is the real deal! I do my homework and research beyond the Mainstream Media propaganda. Wish more would.

          On the subject at hand: the following is from
          http://www.marijuana.com/blog/news/2015/04/where-do-presidential-candidates-stand-on-marijuana/

          “As a House member, Sanders repeatedly voted in favor of amendments to prevent the Department of Justice from spending money to interfere with state medical marijuana laws, and he co-sponsored the States’ Rights to Medical Marijuana Act, a bill to reschedule cannabis and provide greater protections for medical patients. He also voted against a 1998 resolution “expressing the sense of Congress that marijuana is a dangerous and addictive drug and should not be legalized for medicinal use.”

          In a 1972 letter, Sanders appeared to endorse legalizing all drugs. He wrote that “there are entirely too many laws that regulate human behavior. Let us abolish all laws which attempt to impose a particular brand of morality or ‘right’ on people. Let’s abolish all laws dealing with…drugs…”

        •  

          Remind me, was Obama going to shut guatanamo during his first 100 days or his first year as president. Well, it’s still open.

  4.  

    He’s the most likely candidate to look at the facts with an open mind, and I understand his cautious approach given the misinformation around this subject that he has been exposed to his entire life (even though he’s in his 70s). Please keep the pressure up on him, and help him to understand that the illegal black market benefits no-one but criminals and has led to all the mass incarceration and militarization of our police forces. It has caused cops to treat people as sub-human, and has viciously assaulted our 4th amendment rights (in addition to others). I’m rooting for you Bernie. And you too Mary Jane!!

    •  

      “He’s the most likely candidate to look at the facts with an open mind” probably the dumbest sentence I’ve read this morning.

    •  

      If he is the most likely candidate to look at it with an open mind than why hasn’t he already? I mean, as a Congressman, and now as a presidential candidate, it’s his job not only to look at the facts to to have already looked at them! He should have a better answer than “well, um, I guess a fine’s ok…”

  5.  

    More government control is just what the country needs. Evidently Bernie has never heard of regulatory capture. But he is not for arresting MJ consumers. But government will control selling.

    No more taxed or regulated than tomatoes.

    •  

      Freedom is far more important than taxes and rules. – Never vote against ANY legalization.

      •  

        “Never vote against ANY legalization.”

        Even Ohio’s crappy monopoly?

        •  

          Especially not Responsible Ohio. It’s not a monopoly. There are ten different grow groups and some of those groups are comprised of up to 30 investors. – Many medical marijuana states are limited to just a few growers, and we don’t see much crying about it.

          The growing arrangements are of minor consideration next to the incredible freedom and justice it creates for all of the thousands of Ohio marijuana consumers – and retailers. – It is also strategically important since it penetrates the Midwest and East. It will be a beacon that will powerfully help turn the Eastern half of the country.

          And it will also help the other Western states that are poised to vote on re-legalization next year in November. Momentum is hard to turn back. Once California and some others join the free states next year, the crumbling fraud of the federal prohibition will collapse under its own dead weight – as soon as 2017.

          Further, it will be a brief advantage for R.O. investors. With the fall of the federal prohibition, the national marijuana market will flourish quickly and sweep away any local arrangements.

          •  

            Those local arrangements will be written into Ohio’s constitution!

            However, I tend to support Ohio’s proposition, too, but for different reasons. I think that it will be a step forward for freedom, even with the monopoly (ok I know it’s really an oligopoly but I hate that word, I never can say it and I usually can’t spell it either). And if Ohioans don’t like the monopoly they can vote that part out next year.

          •  

            Why put limits at all on the amount of “grow groups”? Is it the fear of big marijuana?

        •  

          I agree with jontomas’s take on the quote “monopoly” additionally, how many phone companies are in ohio? How many electric companies? It’s more an opogopoly than a monopoly anyways. Regardless thou, you can still grow your own, if you don’t support the “monopoly.” If anything, it’s way better than going to jail, facing hefty fines, becoming unemployable because of a marijuana charge.

      •  

        That’s the mindset held by typical narrow-minded voters.
        They don’t see the myriad of downside probabilities that accompany their “perfect” candidate.

    •  

      Last I checked you can’t get a ticket for possessing tomatoes.

  6.  

    Since most Democrats are beholden to the wealthy and big corporations, they have not backed the people in decades. This is an incredible opportunity for average citizens to take back America. – Up With Bernie Sanders!

    •  

      Of course. More government control will be a great boon to the people. Until the other party gets in and uses that control against the people.

      The game is rigged. And if you think it is rigged in your favor, well I wish you’d share a taste of your stash.

      Less government means the politicians have fewer favors to sell. And the favors they sell are never in favor of the people.

      •  

        Less or more government are just talking points that mean nothing. People want less government because government suck at their jobs. They need to be held accountable.

        •  

          Yes. That’s the problem. Our government is structurally very good, but it has been hijacked by wealthy thugs. They are the ones who install incompetent bureaucrats – for various reasons.

      •  

        That’s the way it usually is, until an exception comes along. Sanders is that exception.

  7.  

    The common sense candidate across the board! These guys have it https://berniegear.com/t-shirts/bernie-marijuana-leaf-tee/

    •  

      He did not come out in support of our cause. Didn’t you read the article? He’s going to throw us under the bus, just like Obama did.

      •  

        In what way? He has supported what the people want in VT. He is open to looking at federal decriminilization/end of prohibition. He is against for profit prisions and militant police force. He knows that way too many people are going to prison and the whole prison complex is racially unjust. This isn’t some bought and paid for candidate who has spent years dealing with lobbyists and getting in bed with big business. This is the time to get rid of as much of that as possible. You can’t expect a candidate in this climate to come out adamantly for pot, it would be suicide. But he has said the most positive of any candidate on the subject.

        •  

          Well I don’t see why it would be suicide when more than half the people support it, which can’t be said for the socialist viewpoints he espouses without fear of political suicide. And while I am relieved he understands about the problems in our justice system I am still extremely disappointed that he has not at a minimum embraced letting states decide. At least Rand has submitted legislation to move cannabis to Schedule 2, to protect cannabusinesses from the DEA, to allow said businesses to access banking services, and so on. He has also been working on improving the criminal justice system, notably by collaborating with Cory Booker on sentencing reform. What has Bernie done for us? Nothing. And he has NOT said the most positive of any candidate on the subject, again that has been Rand Paul. Bernie doesn’t even TALK about this subject unless cornered and then he hims and haws. He didn’t even come out and state category that he supports the rights of states to legalize. He didn’t even come out and state that he supports the rights of cannabusinesses to access banking. He mentioned them as issues for the federal government but he didn’t say he supported it; he only said he supports decriminalization. He also said that he might include more support for medical cannabis in his campaign platform (presumably to favor federal laws protecting state laws) and that he will eventually some day (maybe) answer our questions about whether he supports re-legalization.

          This is a candidate who doesn’t want to be asked about cannabis.

          •  

            I don’t think you’re up to date on Bernie’s quotes.

            http://marijuanapolitics.com/bernie-sanders-states-should-be-able-to-legalize-cannabis-without-restrictions/

            It isn’t only about majority rule, if we had a simple general election by majority that would be a different story. This is still politics, we still have primaries and caucuses and we still have smear campaigns, attack ads, etc. He can’t just take strong positions on every topic right out of the gate. I am very much of the belief from what I’ve seen over the last 5 months that the campaign is well aware of what they are doing and what/when the positions they take. If they roll it out at once there isn’t anything new to capture interest and there are considerations to be made when any position is taken. If I had to vote for someone else, especially a Republican, it would be Rand. I did like Ron and I think Rand has some of the most sane positions of another candidate.

            This isn’t an election of marijuana rights. There is a larger picture.

          •  

            Just some minor corrections. Rand Paul’s legislation (with Barney Frank) didn’t propose moving cannabis from Schedule 1 to Schedule 2, it would have removed cannabis completely from the CSA Schedules, not put it in Schedule 2. That is much better than just shifting cannabis to Schedule 2 where it still could be greatly limited for medical and research purposes. Taking it out of the Schedules altogether would have opened up all kinds of medical and research opportunities.

            Also, Bernie has done a few supportive things during his 24 years in federal office. Although Bernie did not co-sponsor Rand Paul’s legislation to remove cannabis from the CSA, Bernie has co-sponsored legislation regarding industrial hemp, he has singed on to legislation limiting the feds from going after medical users in those states, and he has singed on to legislation that would reform the federal prison system.

            I do agree with you that Rand Paul has been much better than Bernie Sanders on the cannabis issue based on their actual actions while in office. Cannabis has to be taken out of Schedule 1 before any meaningful reforms can truly take place, and Bernie has never supported doing that, to my knowledge.

            It would be vastly easier for Bernie to come out in favor of removing cannabis from Schedule 1 than it would for him to favor legalization, and Bernie still hasn’t even taken that one small, first step in calling for cannabis to be removed from Schedule 1. Until Bernie favors removing cannabis from Schedule 1, I’m afraid he can not be trusted any further than Clinton or Obama on the issue of cannabis.

          •  

            “Bernie has never supported doing that, to my knowledge.”

            It’s called Google.

            “Until Bernie favors removing cannabis from Schedule 1, I’m afraid he can not be trusted any further than Clinton or Obama on the issue of cannabis.”

            Since I’ve now proven that he does favor rescheduling, I think you should edit in a note on this that you were exceedingly lazy and didn’t google Bernie’s marijuana record (which includes decriminalization when Rand Paul was in diapers and Bernie was mayor of Burlington).

  8.  

    Legalize the herb for the herb is good.

  9.  

    Ah. Income inequality reform. If it passes it will mean greater inequality. Why? The only way to do that reform will be a more powerful government. And who controls the government and the proceeds from it? The people who currently control government. Politicians don’t matter. Except to sell out the people in the name of the people. (Obama ring a bell?)

    Communists government always empower oligarchs. The more communist the policies (government control) the greater the inequality.

    Well. Bernie. Because Americans deserve what they will get. Just as they totally deserved Obama.

    I favor Trump. Why? I KNOW he is a crook. And so does everyone else. He will be watched like a hawk.

    •  

      Not really. A society ruled by the wealthy elite is more of an oligarchy than any socialist government could ever imagine. – There has never existed a true communist government.

      Communism has only succeeded on the small scale so far – like the Kibbutzes in Israel or that incredibly successful commune, The Farm, in Tennessee.

      And the biggest difference is the priority of a socialist government is the welfare of the people, while the priority of a plutocracy is to increase their own riches and power – by draining those vital factors from the people.

    •  

      Wow, your wordspew has single-handedly sh*tted up this comment section, congrats. Good luck on your voting for the most obviously evil guy strategy, but have you thought about just crayoning in “MY DADDY” instead?

    •  

      if you lime eating crap follow this clown. because that is all he will ever feed you.

    •  

      I don’t know if I could bring myself to support Trump. It’s SO easy to say… “… You’ll get so tired of winning..” as well as “we’ll have the most powerful military”, etc…

      That’s great, now HOW you gonna pay for it? Unless he spends his OWN money, that ain’t happening. We’re in too bad of financial shape to even talk like that. Our “debt service” is our largest annual expense. We just CAN’T keep spending like this. We should be ASHAMED of what we’ve left our grandchildren!

      I don’t wanna hear how Republicans have spent all this money either! They’ve been in charge 10 years out of the last 50! Sure they spent like drunken Sailors when they were in last time but still couldn’t come close to spending, what we do now. Our debt is right now ($18.5 TRILLION).

      That’s why Sanders IDEA of spending ANOTHER $16-$18 TRILLION to cover all his social plans is absolute fucking NUTS! China already OWNS our asses! President Obama even acknowledged that “this was the BEST Iran nuclear deal we could get because we have no leverage with China anymore”.

      They OWN us! Americans don’t understand that EVERY penny we spend OVER what we take in every year has to come from somewhere! The sad thing is, EVERY penny we spend OVER what we take in is borrowed from CHINA! It’s NOT worth selling our sovereignty because Americans want a handout. All that is, Vote buying! Promise them the world for NOTHING and they’ll vote for you! That’s scientifically proven!

  10.  

    I really love Bernie’s answers to these questions. Even if he doesn’t win, to have a guy who is doing so well in the polls talking about marijuana legalization, I will freak. I don’t dislike Obama, but he didn’t have the backbone to take that stance. Major props if Bernie does.

    •  

      He is not for legalization. He is for decriminalization — which means if you get caught once you pay a civil fine (ticket), and if you get caught again you go to jail. In some states, if you’re caught with it in a vehicle you can be charged with a DUI/DWI which is a criminal offense even the first time and even if you’re not high while operating the vehicle. He’s not pro-cannabis, in other words, just a politician.

    •  

      Agreed. . Not many talking about obama but his presidency has been a Major disappointment. One thing that would save his legacy would be executive order removing marijuana from schedule one on his last day of office. It could be coming, I dunno. If it isn’t then we wasted eight years on one of America’s worst presidents in many lifetimes. May as well just call him W on speed.

    •  

      He is a huge disappointment. I was really hoping he would offer us a ray of hope but he didn’t and now we’re going to get shafted again by the next president, whoever s/he may be.

  11.  

    sure sounds like a politician very disappointed in Bernie’s answer or the lack of one..

    •  

      If you wanna win the game you gotta play the game. You’re silly if you thought he was gonna come out in full support this early in the campaign. Read between the lines of what he’s saying and have patience my friend.

      •  

        perhaps I was hoping for too much but we have been waiting a long time.

      •  

        When I read between the lines I just see him doing whatever he can to get the college students’ votes but then dropping the whole subject like a hot potato once elected. That’s what is between the lines. He is no friend of our movement, sorry. He has done nothing for us in 24 years. Zilcho. Zero. El squat-a-mundo.

  12.  

    This sounds great from a presidential candidate but it’s the only good thing that comes out of his month.

    •  

      if you are hoping for world peace, go to a miss america pagent. this is an issue that directly affects millions of americans. it is time to take control of the direction if our country.

  13.  

    No, that is not enough. Very disappointing. The bare minimum from a federal candidate that would be acceptable to me, is that they will FIGHT to take cannabis off of Schedule 1. Bernie can not credibly say he is in favor medical cannabis without also saying he believes cannabis should be taken out of Schedule 1. This is so disappointing and I hope he wakes up and gets rid of this extremely weak stance on cannabis.

    I will never again give the power of my vote to any candidate that will allow human beings to be locked in cages for cannabis. That would be like voting to lock myself up. I might as well just go down to the police station and turn myself in if I’m going to be that destructive with the power of my vote.

    A vote for a candidate that is opposed the legalization at any government level, is a vote to lock me in a cage, and that makes me very sad.

    •  

      you vote for the candidate that best helps the situation or someone else will decide for you!

      •  

        Nope. No one gets to vote for me. (Except maybe in Chicago.) Sometimes you must lose the battle if you want to win the war. I’m in this for the long haul, not just the next election cycle. The decision to lock people up has already been made and there is only one way to change that decision.

        Using the power of my vote to lock human beings in cages violates my personal ethics. If every cannabis supporter respected the power of their vote in this manner, this war will end much sooner than if they just keep holding their noses and continue to vote to lock people up.

        •  

          You have to admit that supporting decriminalization, medical marijuana, prison reform, and marijuana banking is a step in the right direction though.

          •  

            I will admit that, if you admit that his refusal to say he wants cannabis out of Schedule 1 just means he’s giving us some lip service on the issue instead of actually fighting for decrim, medical cannabis, prison reform, and cannabis banking.

            If he were fighting for those issues, the very first step in the right direction would be to remove cannabis from Schedule 1. Otherwise, its all talk and no action. I have hope he will publicly demand that cannabis be taken out of Schedule 1 during this campaign, but he won’t do that unless we hold his feet to the fire now by withholding our support until his actions deserve it.

            His current legislation proposed to stop prison privatization I fully support, but that does not address cannabis arrests and incarceration. And I support his foreign policy related to foreign wars. The only issue bigger than freedom versus jail, is life versus death, in my book, and he has me there.

          •  

            Staying mum on a controversial issue that would cost him support in the early months of the campaign when he’s fighting against Clinton and her billionaire Super PACs is not “giving us some lip service”, it’s called being smart and calculated.

          •  

            He’s been in federal office for 24 years now, since 1991. So he’s stayed quiet on a controversial issue for 24 years in federal office because he is afraid of the Clintons and you think that is smart and calculated? I’d call that weak and wimpy, to say the very least. If he’s that afraid to say what he really thinks about cannabis, that is certainly not a leadership quality I would ever support.

            Bernie Sanders has never been a cannabis leglaization supporter, no matter how much some of his fans want to spin it. They’ll have to do a lot better than this smart and calculated argument after his 24 years in federal office.

          •  

            I was talking about his short time campaigning, not his career in office (sorry if that wasn’t as obvious as I thought it was). When you’re fighting for civil rights and other social justices I can’t imagine the fate of a plant being high on your priority list. I understand that to you this comes off as weak and wimpy but to me I don’t think it’s as big of an issue as the countless others he’s attempted to right in his long career. Do I know his opinion on the issue for these past 24 years? No, and I don’t care really. I care about his opinion right now, and I believe that when the time comes for him to give his full opinion (once he has the dem. nomination, probably) that you and I will both be very happy with it.

          •  

            This isn’t about the fate of a plant. This is about the fate of the 700,000 human beings, mostly minorities, being locked in cages every year for having that plant. Civil rights and social justice? Ending the blatantly racist drug war should be the number one priority on that list since the drug war is the biggest reason why so many minorities’ civil rights are being violated. The drug war gives all those cops out there all the reason they need to unfairly target minorities.

            I hope he does change his tune on prohibition and does it fast. If he waits until after the primary, it will be too late for my vote. Logic would say this would be best time for him to change his stance on cannabis since during the general election he will have to lean towards the middle and all of the voters instead of just the liberals during the primary.

            No Democrat in my lifetime has ever gotten more liberal after the primary, so I do not get your reasoning at all there. Now is the best time for him to support taking cannabis out of Schedule 1 IF that is really what he believes. I’m afraid, based on his 24 years in office, that he just doesn’t care to do anything about the status quo on cannabis. In which case, he’s lost my vote.

          •  

            Why have you not gone back and edited your lies?

          •  

            Except that there is NO evidence that he will ever change his position and some evidence that he will not. And anyway what is so controversial about it? More than half the country wants it! If he were really worried about fighting Clinton and her Super PACs then he would come out pro-relegalization and shut up about socialism.

          •  

            That’s everything that Rand Paul wants as well. Until this debate, Republicans would rather get kicked in the NUTS than say they support legalization!

            But Sanders can SAY he’s for this and that but IIRC, he’s not even a cosponsor of the version of the CARERS Act in the Senate. iirc it’s SB 162?, which does many of the things you’ve mentioned above.

            OTOH, Rand Paul has put his money where his mouth is and has cosponsored EVERY piece of marijuana reform legislation in the Senate that he didn’t SPONSOR or WRITE!

            So if it’s a thing of receiving your vote for this issue, it should go to Rand Paul hands down. Among all other 2016 Presidential candidates on EITHER side, HE’S the one that’s put his money where his mouth is and then defended those positions in front of 23 Million people! He’s hands down THE best candidate on this issue!

          •  

            Rand Paul and Barney Frank also introduced HB 2306 in 2011 that would have taken cannabis out of Schedule 1 and remove it from the federal CSA Schedules completely. Bernie Sanders did not sign on to co-sponsor that, and to my knowledge, has never publicly stated he would support removing cannabis from Schedule 1.

            Bernie has had opportunities for many years to call for the removal of cannabis from Schedule 1, which is the first step in the right direction on this issue, and he has failed to do so.

            You are correct, on cannabis issues Rand Paul is much better than Bernie Sanders based on their actions while in office.

          •  

            He’s (Sanders) actually come out AGAINST it, just as late as 6 months ago!

          •  

            Sonofa… I did not know that. If you have any more info about that, I’d appreciate it. I’ll go look around to see if I can find it. Very disappointing.

          •  

            I give him credit for at least trying to educate himself on the issue but many will say, too little too late.

          •  

            You are absolutely right and I will vote for Rand Paul over any other candidate if given the chance. Unfortunately that is a humongous IF :-(

          •  

            Making possession something you should pay a fine for — as Bernie Sanders said in his own words — is nowhere near prison reform; not even sure why you included that in your list. Sanders did not say he wants to legalize cannabis at all, like other candidates have. He said “it’ll be something you pay a fine for possessing”. That means it’s a civil infraction.

            Many states, e.g. Texas, have the ability to treat infractions as misdemeanors, felonies, and vice-versa in the case of drugs. An example of this is the civil infraction of a minor in possession of alcohol. If the minor is also being loud, reckless, or violent (even if you aren’t, cops are dicks in some states and will just charge you anyway, especially if you’re a minority) those little tickets get treated as misdemeanors, and the kid now has a criminal background. Sanders is doing nothing to stop the prison industrial complex, at least not in regards to cannabis.

            I’m incredibly surprised at all the sheepy Sanders support here.

  14.  

    better than the rest of the candidates in either party. he has my vote!

    •  

      One error you made with due respect. Paul is better than anyone. But thats it. Sanders is the best democrat running, and better than any other republican running, period.

      •  

        @metalbuoy:disqus is correct. At least with respect to this issue, Rand Paul stands out. He was the first to say that re-legalization is a states’ rights issue, and while now most of the Republicans and even some Democrats toe that same line Rand backs up his stance with legislative action. None of the other candidates have done nearly as much as Rand Paul to further cannabis freedoms at the federal level, and that includes Bernie Sanders. He hasn’t done squat for us.

  15.  

    Well I won’t be voting for Sanders. Anyone who is not for decriminalization/LEGALIZATION* is fucking retarded at this point.

    •  

      It’s not like he’s against decriminalization, he blatantly supports Colorado’s right as a state to legalize marijuana. He’s of the mindset that states should decide and he’s not going to overrule their decisions.

      •  

        And he’s being pragmatic – forcing states to legalize that don’t want to would be political suicide. Republicans would tear him apart. Now he gets to essentially support progressive normalization, while trumpeting ‘states rights’ at the same time.

        Keep in mind – plenty of voters are vehemently against legalization, and a presidential candidate who came out strongly in favor would have an uphill struggle to even win their primary.

        •  

          Sanders supports re-legalization. He’s just waiting for the right time to announce it.

          •  

            He doesn’t support re-legalization. He never has done. And he’s trying to avoid saying it because it will piss off the very people who currently support him the most (a move that’s right out of Hillary’s play book). But if you think he agrees with the re-legalization agenda then you are fooling yourself. He even said in the interview that he is ok with cannabis users getting fined.

          •  

            People have this man ALL wrong! Just because he’s a Socialist, in NO WAY means that he’s PRO Cannabis! If it’s taken him THIS long to take a stance on the issue. I’m not sure I’d TRUST that’s actually his position on the issue. He could be swayed the other way just as fast!

            It just seems awfully convenient when he’s been AGAINST it for years!

          •  

            The truth is they ‘legalized’ cannabis here in OR. You can still get thrown in jail. Now it’s gonna probably be a tax law that does it tho. It was the republicans who were trying to put as many restrictions or outright stop ‘legalization. The right would have us believe that all we need is less regulation for companies, markets, and all things capitalistic and we would solve all our financial problems. This unfettered capitalism is what has sucked all the wealth from the middle class. The right can’t seem to separate state from religion, the main reason we have draconian drug laws. No, Rand Paul is not the answer we need. FEEL THE BERN!

          •  

            You just keep on believin that!

      •  

        “In other words, if you are possessing a small amount of marijuana … you might have to pay a fine on that.” <– against decriminalization. Are you unaware of the way politician's speak? It takes a little bit of intelligent analysis, but it's not that damn hard. Wake up dude.

        •  

          Benny, you’re unaware of the definitions of words you’re using. Decriminalization means that it is not a criminal infraction to posses or use the substance. You don’t get arrested, you don’t go to jail and there’s nothing on your criminal record. However, it can still be a civil infraction, meaning you pay a fine. It is still decriminalized though and Bernie clearly stated he is for that. Like I said in my first comment to you, I think you mean legalization, which of course would mean it would not be a civil infraction either. Stop being a dick, take a deep breath (or two) and reread what you write a few times before you hit POST.

          •  

            You are unaware of the pragmatics of the law. What happens if I don’t pay all my accrued cannabis fines? Also, even infractions can be treated as criminal offenses in some states if other conditions are also true (e.g. operating a vehicle, possession of paraphernalia, etc.). If it’s not legalized, it is not decriminalized.

          •  

            I think people are jumping to conclusions. It sounds like @Benny understands exactly what decriminalization means. He just finds it offensive.

        •  

          That is exactly the definition of decriminalization. It’s treated like a speeding ticket, but you don’t go to jail. You’re getting mixed up with legalization. And these things don’t happen overnight. Baby steps, man

    •  

      How did you miss the first quote in the article: “My home state of Vermont has decriminalized marijuana and I support that”
      Maybe you meant legalization, which Bernie (smartly) is staying mum about at the moment. Once he gains more supporters and actually has the nomination I doubt he’ll be so quiet on the issue. Remember, there are more important things at stake here.

      •  

        Read on dummy: “In other words, if you are possessing a small amount of marijuana it should not be a criminal offense, it will be civil, and you might have to pay a fine on that.” What if I don’t pay the fine? What if I possess it while operating a vehicle? It becomes a criminal offense. If it’s not legal, it’s illegal. Just think about what you read before regurgitating it.

        •  

          Oh Benny….he’s stating a fact there, not giving his opinion. Take a deep breath, realize the name calling just makes you seem immature and unintelligent, and do a little research (and smoke a bowl and relax a bit too). If you know anything about Bernie and his campaign you would be at ease knowing that when the time comes Bernie will most definitely be on our side.

          •  

            He said he is pro fining people for possessing it. That means it’s not legal. No, I don’t care what you learned on a YouTube video about the legal jargon; anything that isn’t legal is effectively illegal, and very illegal in some states. Sanders has opposed cannabis for 24 years in government, look it up fanboys.

          •  

            Decriminalization is a vital step because it will stop locking people up for incredibly long amounts of time (1-10 years, some 3rd time offenders even life). A fine is a lot better than years.

          •  

            It would probably be exactly the same as it is now. Cops in Texas, etc. would be able to turn a civil infraction into a criminal offense in the same way they are able to turn a misdemeanor possession into felonies right now. 1.5 million people are arrested for non-violent drug offenses annually. There are people in legal states who still face complications even though their state says they are legal. Legit medical dispensaries still get raided or are shut down due to local ordinances. It has to be fully legalized, or it’s the same as criminalized/illegal because of how flexible enforcing officers are allowed to be with the law.

          •  

            If it is decriminalized then:
            * it is still illegal. You can still get fined and those fines will continue to be levied disproportionately on minority youths.

            * you have to go to an actual criminal to buy it. In fact, since consumers don’t face penalties, under decriminalization you may see a black market boom.

            * sales are still illegal which means unregulated. Kids will be able to get cannabis more easily not less easily.

            * sales are still illegal and controlled by criminals, so cannabis-related gang violence will still be a problem. And with decriminalization there is no way to ensure that the supply is not coming from Mexican cartels or other organized crime.

            * cultivation will remain illegal. People will get busted for growing their own, and they could face losing their homes through asset forfeiture. Or they will grow on public lands as they do now, and the ensuing environment atrocities will continue.

            Maybe this is why Benny is so uncomfortable with it.

        •  

          That’s what decriminalization is, Benny. Changing an infraction from a criminal offense to a civil offense.

  16.  

    Hey Bernie, what about this?

    Harry Anslinger was the father of the DEA. He told Congress it should be illegal because of its effects on the degenerate races. He said it makes darkies think they are as good as white men. It started as a war against dark-skinned people. Now it is a war against all people and all creation.

    Nixon asked Governor Shaffer to form a commission to study Cannabis. The Shaffer Commission concluded that it had benefits, was harmless and should not be criminalized. Nixon ignored the findings of his own commission and increased the war efforts.

    SWAT was originally for hostage rescue situations. Now they kick in doors at 3:00 AM looking for an herb.

    John Rockefeller wanted to push patented man-made pharmaceuticals so he could get richer. He didn’t want anyone to be able to grow their own medicine for free.

    This is a war against people and against liberty, self-governance, self-determination and self-ownership.

    How can any of these self-righteous parasites continue to support a war that started with such evil intentions?

    Do you believe they have the right to rule over you and feed off your labor?

    Their violence should never be rewarded by ever allowing them to tax and control. Instead, they should be made to apologize to their victims and pay restitution.

    Here is the face of the drug war. It is a war on people. Woe to those who shed innocent blood. Woe to those who call evil good and good evil.

  17.  

    To all the people below who just say “I’m disappointed he’s not supporting legalization (yet)” and are done with it, remember that this is politics, not American Idol, and you have a say in what politicians’ stances are! No time more than early during a presidential campaign, when the candidates are still creating their platforms. Bernie has specifically said that he’s still determining his policy on legalization, and that policy will of course be determined in part by the amount of response he gets from the public on the issue. Tell him why legalization is important, and he will listen. Bernie is one of the few candidates not taking billionaire SuperPAC money, so we have a better chance with him than anyone else.

    To those who will reply, “what’s the use,” “it’s all a game,” etc. etc., why did you even bother to click on the article, if none of it even matters, and politicians are all the same anyways? If you have enough time to leave a cynical comment, you have enough time to tweet him (@BernieSanders). Otherwise, you’re just being a partisan troll who cares more about reinforcing your viewpoint then moving forward on legalization.

    •  

      Actually I think politics is more like American Idol than actual politicking, good comparison! Bernie has explicitly stated he is pro fining people for pot. That means cops will fuck over minorities and people with past offenses by elevating those fines to misdemeanors. Seen it before, not voting for him, moving on.

  18.  

    Bernie is not aware of the racist origin of the marijuana prohibition and so it is hard for him to see the connection between immigrantion and prohibition. Further more someone needs to inform him of the economic potential of Industrial Hemp, long surpresed for the same racist reasons. We are talking about jobs, millions of jobs growing, processing and manufactuering hemp based fuel, carbon neutral fuel, food, fiber, medicine and the only safe recreational anything. So say over 100 million citizens. We are legion and everywhere and will carry to victory and candidate willing to support our righteous and noble cause. Forget his or any politicans personal opinions, there real questions is Will He represent US …. we do not need leadership we need representation ………. let the good times roll

  19.  

    pay a fine to smoke pot Bernie your just as bad as the rest of the worthless politicians .no vote for Bernie sanders until he makes himself clear .

  20.  

    There is more to this election than cannabis legalization. I support most of what Bernie says. The fact that he is for less intervention by the Feds, changing banking laws and generally for working people is enough to get my vote. Paul Rand is a distant second for me.

    •  

      That’s fine, but SAYING you’re for something and putting your money where your mouth is on the issue are 2 totally different things! There’s legislation in the Senate right NOW that’ll accomplish MOST of our demands. Yet Sanders hasn’t signed on as a Cosponsor of ANY of the bills.

      Rand Paul on the other hand WROTE the bills or Cosponsored every one of them.

      •  

        Sanders has raised hopes with his ‘stay tuned’ comments. They will be dashed unless he supports legalization. Anything less is half measures, politics as usual. Bernie needs to confront the indisputable fact that alcohol use is far, far more likely to cause violence than cannabis use. Alcohol supremacism over cannabis is in contempt of the needs of basic public safety and public health, and the need for elemental justice and the equality of all citizens.

        •  

          I fully understand what you’re saying. But, it’s not even about that honestly.

          These are rights that are already OURS! We’re not trying to legalize marijuana. We’re trying to RE-legalize marijuana. These are rights that were taken AWAY from us, because NOBODY stood up to stop it! American over the years have become very complacent! That’s BY design as well. Over the last 226 years, The United States Congress has taken a sledge hammer to our Constitutional rights! This is NO longer the country I was born into. It’s definitely not even the country that I served! But I’m willing to stand up and change OUR system! Capitalism is a GREAT thing! CRONY Capitalism isn’t! THAT’S what we’ve got to pot a stop to.

          He (Bernie) needs to recognize the Gov’t had NO RIGHT to prohibit it in the first place or I’d say he’s pandering for votes. I KNOW he’s hit a hot spot with Americans. That’s why Non-politicians are so popular during this election cycle. Americans are tired of Career politicians on BOTH sides! NOBODY needs to spend 60 years in Congress! Hell after 10 years (1HoR term, 1 Senate term) the bastard need to go home and help their community from there. Because they’ve fanned sure forgotten what it’s like in their States!

          Americans are tired of having the deck stacked against them. It’s NOT the system that’s mired us in this bullshit we’re in, though. The problem is the people WE put in DC, to represent us! They more loyal to Party Emoticon than they are to the people and that MUST stop! Sure the next President can just legalize marijuana with the strikre of a pen. However, Congress is still the key! Because the NEXT President can RE-prohibit it. Congress will still need to handle this issue our it will NEVER fully be settled.

          You also can’t TELL me that Donald Trump is the BEST this Country’s got! But then again I would say the same for the OTHER side! Until WE DEMAND “Term Limits” things will not change! We have a system that works VERY well or it wouldn’t have lasted 226 years. It’s NOT perfect, but there is not ONE Socialist country that is an economic power on the world stage. There’s not ONE Socialist country with more than 5 Million people that’s even successful. I don’t understand wanting to throw out our democracy and adhere to Socialism? Especially knowing all we KNOW about it and its success rate across the world.

    •  

      There is more to this election than cannabis legalization. “The FACT that he is for LESS govt intervention, changing banking laws and generally for the working people” I’m sorry and I’m not being rude but, what Bernie Sanders are you speaking of?

      Bernie Sanders is a self admitted Socialist! That means just the OPPOSITE of what you’re wanting to achieve. You need to read the definition of a Socialist. Socialism is the antithesis of Freedom! For THAT matter, EQUALITY is the antithesis of Freedom as well. They’re NOT for LESS govt interference! They’re for govt controlling EVERY aspect of your life. The Govt knows BETTER how to spend YOUR money, than you do. The govt will TELL you where YOUR child will go to school. How little of your OWN money that YOU earned, that you’ll get to keep. Trust me, you won’t get to keep what you do now! You ain’t get to keep but MAYBE <15% of what you earn. You think you're struggling now? Hold onto your ASS goes this's goin fast!

      Sure you wanna stick it to the 1% (as they say). But you don't realize the FUCKING you're giving yourself, in the process! Sure he'll tax them at 85%-90% as he's been quoted as saying he would do. But understand YOU'RE going to be paying the SAME thing. He's also been quoted as saying "we should spend ANOTHER $18 TRILLION, towards Social programs in this country". Well that's all fine and dandy Bernie. But just like we're saying to Mr Trump when he says all his blustery shit. How're you gonna PAY for it? We're $18.6 TRILLION in DEBT now! Look at a Socialist country (ie: Brazil) then show me how well off they are economically and how much LESS govt interference you think there is. How well off their population is? Then get back to me.

      Sanders is FAR from being FOR the working man. He's for taking everything FROM the working man and giving it to everyone else! I dunno where that came from?

      What's the MOST important thing to an American worker? No, not pay inequality. No, not minimum wage. That only affects 1 million Americans! You should actually be embarrassed if that's the ONLY job you can get. No, not the fact that corporations aren't paying the taxes you think they should!

      The MOST important thing to an American worker is… A JOB! Without THAT, nothing else matters! I hope you're reality isn't one that thinks, if you tax the wealthy at 90%, that they'll keep their Corp. OR their money based in the US? You don't think that they'll employ people here as well, do you? WHY would they? They work their asses off to make their company a success, 80 hour work weeks to make their company a success, as well as their employees being successful. They have a GREAT year and the govt's gonna come take 90% of their profits? Then also put all these regulations on them, that ALSO cost them money? Which in turn costs jobs.

      I hope your reality isn't one, that if you tax the wealthy AS WELL AS the American worker at 90% that they will just accept that? The wealthy will move their residency to a more tax friendly country. I GUARANTEE it! Then the "working man" gets stuck with the bill AGAIN! But THIS time WITHOUT any jobs being available. Because the job creators are no longer here. Hell, The United States of America will no longer be in existence!

      After all, the America that was created in 1776, no longer exists at that point! Understand that Socialism IS govt intrusion into EVERY aspect of your life! Look at Brazil's society as well as economy!

      Bernie Sanders is actually AGAINST EVERYTHING you said you wanted in a candidate. He wants to change banking laws, but that's NOT to make it more convenient for businesses. It's ONLY so that govt gets ALL the money they WANT to take from you. It's centrally located where they can grab it! I hope you don't think that he'd just tax the wealthy, yet leave YOU alone? You wanted this equality? Guess what? I bet you WON'T want it after you get a load of it. Hell, America's ALREADY rejecting ObamaCare and NONE of the REALLY bad stuff has even hit yet. They were out off until 2016 to preserve someone's legacy. You think govt is intrusive NOW? You ain't seen nothing yet!

      I know there are those on here that will try to twist what I'm saying into something it DOESN'T say, mean, was intended to say OR actually DOES say. But I'm just trying to tell you, if you're truly an American and believe in what America was intended to be, not necessarily what we are. Then embracing Socialism or any it's tenets, makes no sense.

      The ONLY thing wrong with our Gov't, is what WE'VE allowed it to become. WE'VE allowed the BASTARDIZATION of our Constitution, Bill of Rights, Separation of powers, etc…

      It's OUR job to take it back. But I GUARANTEE you that Socialism isn't what you want.

      •  

        You really have no idea what this man is about. What you’re accusing him of is communist socialism. What he believes in is democratic socialism. You really should look up the difference before spewing hate speech.

        •  

          Sorta like a “Moderate Muslim” huh? Did he or did he not, just call for another $18 TRILLION in spending for social programs”? Then after he was called on it, he walked it back and said, “maybe not $18 Trillion, but…”

          Well that sounds good but he’s talking out his ASS and anybody with half of a brain should see this! I just wanna know, at what point in time in this Country’s history did GOVT, even get the POWER for “cradle to grave” entitlements? MOST of these entitlements are unconstitutional, anyway. BOTH Civil and Corporate entitlements!

          But to even INTIMATE that there’s a big difference between what YOU call, a “Democratic Socialist” and a “Communistic Socialist” I find that quite humorous actually. Especially when I’d bet my LAST ? that you see NO DIFFERENCE between Conservatives at all! I’d bet, that in your eyes, EVERY person with conservative, Libertarian, personal responsibility, personal freedom principles OR has an R behind their name, is STILL a ? fringe Tea Party Republican to you! That you see NO difference between Conservatives! That they’re ALL ? But I’m told I don’t understand “Democratic Socialism”? ?

          Seriously! When did it become MY job to make sure, YOU have a living wage OR even Healthcare, for that matter? Isn’t it YOUR responsibility to increase your skills in the work force in able to get more ??? Isn’t it YOUR job to ensure that your skills are those that are needed in order to support YOUR family? Sometimes, we don’t actually have the opportunity to do exactly what it is we WANT to do for a living. But isn’t it YOUR responsibility to obtain the skills of a job that CAN support YOUR family? Nowhere in the Constitution, the Preamble to the Constitution, Bill of Rights, etc… says the govt will provide you healthcare! Isn’t that sorta YOUR responsibility too? It’s not my job to take care of YOUR family? If you can’t afford 5 kids, don’t HAVE 5 kids, ya know? If I WISH to help you or your family, as I do annually, I will do what Americans are known for. Give MY money to a charity that deals with the specific issue.

          Whenever govt gets involved, the COST of the program SKYROCKETS! Administrative costs quadruple, JUST because govt gets involved. What does that do? It takes ?? out of the hands of those who NEED it and into the hands of bureaucrats!

          You don’t have to believe me, research it! Like I said about all these Republicans who say they’re gonna do this and do that. I ask, where the fuck you gonna get the money, bruh? Sooner or later you still run out of RICH PEOPLE to take it from! Yet we’ve already got $18.6 TRILLION to pay off that we’ve ALREADY borrowed, FROM the Chinese! Our Grandkids, Grandkids will still be paying off the $18.6 Trillion, when THEY die. They’re getting ready to raise the ceiling again, too! So basically you could take EVERY penny the wealthy in this country have and STILL not come close to paying off our debt, we have now! Communistic Socialism and Democratic Socialism have some VERY common trait within both! They’re still SOCIALISM!

          You can put ? and a ? on a ?. But it’s STILL a ?!

          I know you’re trying to throw a smoke screen up about Socialist principles. You can TRY to classify different types of Socialism. You can tell me what the difference between the 2 is, etc… A Democratic Socialist only wants to take 80% of your income? A Democratic Socialist or a Communistic Socialist, STILL believes that the govt should take all the money the rich have, as well as the “Middle Class” in the process and redistribute it the way THEY see fit. They still believe the HS graduate in the mail room, delivering packages and letters for 15 yrs. should get paid the same as the CEO, who’s got 3 DEGREES, works 80+ hours per week. On call 24/7, EVERY day! Responsible for Hundreds of Millions of ? of OTHER PEOPLE’S ?.

          But after YOU sort out, this difference and point out, that difference, when you get to the bottom of the barrel, it’s STILL SOCIALISM! Where the GOVT still knows BETTER than YOU, how to spend YOUR money! How the govt makes SURE you’re taken care of. Even IF you fuck up everything you come into contact with! There are virtually NO consequences for your own personal choices in life and don’t worry about YOUR family either. We’ll take care of them too. Don’t you worry about it!

          Totally against everything this country stands for and WHY we were even created. We LEFT England for many reasons. But a couple of the main reasons were “unfair taxes” and “intrusive govt”.

          •  

            Thank you for proving that you’re more about hate than you are about taking care of our nation. Your rant is so full of froth, I’m surprised you aren’t voting for Santorum.

          •  

            Personal Responsibility in NO WAY equates to HATE! That’s the problem here. Whenever ANYONE DISAGREES with a Liberal you ALL go IMMEDIATELY to calling people Racist, Homophobe, Xenophobe, misogynist, etc…

            It’s easy for you to say that I proved YOUR point. Especially when YOU never actually MADE one. You asserted you knew, but haven’t answered the question given to you. YOU tell ME what the difference is between “Democratic Socialism” and Communistic Socialism” REALLY is? I wanna hear this! I can’t wait, actually! Because for SOME reason it’s STILL SOCIALISM, however you slice it!

          •  

            Technically, it’s still capitalism, controlled by all the people rather than a tiny few. It has nothing to do with government takeover of anything, it has to do with keeping the mega-rich from turning us from a democratic society to a feudal one. Maybe you should look past your own hate-driven nose long enough to get a real education instead of rage – spewing about how taking care of your country and fellow Americans isn’t your job.

          •  

            So now I HATE you because I don’t wanna take care of YOU? Because I don’t think YOU have ANY right telling ANYONE in America, how much money they can make? I’m laughing so hard it’s unbelievable! Thanks JC, I really needed a laugh today. That’s NOT a FREE society. Don’t you have a Mother and Father?

            I wanted to point out that I found out you WERE right! I admit when I’m wrong! After research, I find that you are RIGHT about the fact that “Democratic Socialism has NOTHING to do with the takeover of anything”

            Because it involves the State running most EVERYTHING! When you STEAL someone else’s money, because YOU think they’ve made enough! That’s just not a FREE society! I ask you, exactly WTF do you think you are, telling a FREE man how much ??YOU think he should have? Where do you get off?

            The best description of what you call Democratic Socialism is that “NO matter how hard or long you work to build your business or to SAVE ??, you’ll NEVER get rich!

            However, no matter how much you fuck up, you’ll NEVER fail either!” You’ll always be taken care of! WOW! That’s the very definition of MEDIOCRITY at its best! Absolutely NO consequences for being a fuck up? But penalties if you’re successful? Yeah, I’d say that’ll promote a good economy!

            “Failure is the mother of ALL invention” WHY would ANYONE try to invent ANYTHING that would better mankind when if it works? The govt’s going to take 90% of MY inventions profits and give it to everyone else?

            Next, why would ANYONE with half a brain spend their OWN money to invent a new product knowing that IF it hits, the govt takes 90% of the profits for it? But, if they use their own money trying to invent an item, knowing that IF you FAIL (in which 99.9995% of EVERY invention ever made does) the govt’s not going to reimburse me, now will they? Don’t you think they should reimburse me if my invention fails? Using your logic, shouldn’t the govt then reimburse me 90% of the money I spent to TRY to better mankind? After all, they’re going to take 90% of the PROFITS, if it hits!

            The funny thing about all this is the fact that I’M probably more POOR than you EVER DREAMED of being! EVER❗I’ve been disabled for 23 years! But I STILL take responsibility for ME and my family! I’m not out there telling YOU that “I think you’ve made enough money! Everything you make from this point until Jan 1st, 2017, is to come to me”! That’s fine with you then? Right? Even though the amount of money, where I think you’ve made enough, and the rest should come to me and my friends. Is right now 10% of your TAKE HOME pay! You think you’d be living better than you are now, living off of 10% of what you now make! Put THAT in perspective. Put those numbers on PAPER, then get back to me with this utopian ??!

            Being as poor as I am, yet I STILL don’t think YOU owe me SHIT! Sure I may get a little envious that you’re living nicer than I am. Driving a newer car, etc… But that only makes me want to work harder, or be more creative, to allow my family to live nicer, one day. I don’t fault YOU for the situation I’m in! It’s not YOUR fault!

            Oh, I’m sorry I forgot… I’m full of HATE! I’m supposed to HATE you because, I don’t want YOU to have to take care of me and my family?

          •  

            Wow, you’re disabled and still a conservative? Talk about gullible. You just lost the right to speak to me. You’ve outright failed the IQ test. You actually believe that you, your family or whoever has to bust their ass covering your slack, our disabled veterans, the other people who have worked themselves until they were completely broken, those people don’t deserve to be taken care of?
            See, that’s hate. That’s hate springing from the abject fear that someone will call you a mooch, and the even greater fear that someone will think you are, but other people will get away with it. And it’s fucking stupid. We have social safety nets for exactly that reason. You think it shouldn’t be a right? Then LEAVE THIS COUNTRY. Your morals aren’t good enough to live here.

          •  

            Thank you for telling me how YOU think I should feel. I NEVER said they shouldn’t be taken care of, not ONCE! I just don’t think it’s the Govt’s job to provide for ME. Nor do I think it’s YOUR job, yet you FAULT me and call me hateful for taking PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR MYSELF? That’s fucking rich!

            No, no, no, no, no! I’m NOT gonna let you get away with adding the “Disabled Vet” to your analogy. It’s Apples and oranges! This country made a DEAL with (what turns out to be, only 7% of the American population) Veterans. The deal was… I signed my name on the dotted line for a 5 year term. Which they can do with me what they wish. Up to and including, MY DEATH! In turn for that, the govt will give you healthcare for ANYTHING that they have caused, for the rest of my life! They didn’t make that contract with you! Why should they? You’ve done NOTHING to protect the country! You’ve done NOTHING but, TAKE the rights that Military personnel have protected for you, while attempting to DESTROY what THEY built for you! Where do you get off man?

            FYI, I AM a “Disabled Vet” and fight DAILY for Veteran benefits and rights. I’ve been to D.C. to not only LOBBY Congress on these issues. I’ve TESTIFIED before the U.S. Congress as well. What is it exactly that YOU’VE done to better your situation, OTHER than to yell “… it’s NOT fair!”? What have YOU done, OTHER than put a “Bernie Sanders” bumper sticker on your car, to TRY to make YOUR Country better? After all, isn’t it YOUR job to ensure that Americans are taken care of? Have you been to a protest with 100K OTHER Vets to DEMAND that the govt live up to its CONTRACT with America’s Veterans? Have you?

            You obviously went right over my post from yesterday. EVERY person IN the U.S. already HAS a RIGHT to Healthcare in America! It’s Federal law that EVERY person who enters an Emergency room, MUST BE TREATED and returned to a Stable condition! How much more do you want? They MUST do this even if the patient CAN’T pay!

            We HAVE “Social Safety Nets”! If ANYONE and I do mean ANYONE goes hungry in America, it’s their OWN fault!

            Finally, don’t EVER tell ME to leave a country that I fucking FOUGHT for! A country of which I’m a Disabled Veteran of, as well. The country in which I took an OATH to defend the U.S. Constitution against ALL enemies, foreign AND domestic (that’s you) that wants to subvert what our Founding Fathers formed. I HATE to tell you this buddy, but if you don’t like the govt this country has, maybe YOU should fucking leave?

            You’ve been fun to toy with. Sorta like a cat with a string. But you’ve SHOWN that you’re NOT a TRUE American! Get ready pal because my enlistment contract to defend the Constitution had NO expiration date!

          •  

            And yet, still with the long-winded hate speech.

          •  

            Here Kitty kitty…?? Chase the ? ROFLMAO.

          •  

            Where did I even GET partisan? I got on Republicans as much as I did Socialists! I actually don’t think I even used the WORD Democrat, so please show me this so called froth? ??

            I just gave you the basic principles of Socialism. After all, you DID call it Socialism didn’t you? It’s fairly explained in THIS article, and I would hardly say the WaPo is a “conservative newspaper”

            http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2015/09/19/what-bernie-sanders-means-by-democratic-socialism-you-have-your-choice-of-pajamas/

            The problem with using the Scandinavian country’s as an example is… Population differences! Sweden, Denmark, Norway & Finland COMBINED are a sample size SMALLER than the size of California. It’s LESS than 25 Million people and that’s in 5 countries! Now try to do that with 350 MILLION people? When comparing Scandinavian country’s to the U.S. it should be compared to doing what THEY do in their whole country that’s SMALLER than the population in AZ! I know for a FACT that his policies wouldn’t even be feasible in AZ, so I’m supposed to TRUST him that he can do it for 70 TIMES the size of population he’s using for an example? That NOT only unfeasible, it’s IMMORAL!

            Let’s just get to the “brass tacks” here. Do you even BELIEVE in our Constitution in the first place? That’s a HUGE question here, when were discussing what are rights ARE and AREN’T! Because if you don’t believe in it in the first place, I’m arguing a point with an idiot!

            If you do, Please show me in the Constitution OR The Bill of Rights (which outlines Americans RIGHTS) where it GUARANTEES you the RIGHT to Health Insurance? Where does it GUARANTEE you the RIGHT to a FREE “College” Education? I’ll sit here while you also pull up where you were out GUARANTEES the RIGHT to decent housing?

            There’s NO froth in that, it’s a simple question? The ONLY thing we were GUARANTEED in this country is an OPPORTUNITY! If you don’t take advantage of the opportunity, don’t drag everyone else down with ya, because you don’t even WANT to do better for yourself.

            Socialism promotes MEDIOCRITY!
            Why would a man work 80 hours a week to not only make his Company successful. Which allows HIS family to be able to live more comfortably. Why work hard, when the govt is going to take 90% of the wealth I worked for? Then make ME live, at the SAME level of comfort, someone who sits at their desk, punches a few keystrokes and eats cheese crackers all day, while just WAITING for 5 pm? Doesn’t CARE about my company NOR that it even does well.

            Btw… I’m STILL waiting while you pull up those GUARANTEED Constitutional Rights U asked about.

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            The three inalienable rights. What’s the first one? Oh right. LIFE. Can’t live if you don’t have a right to health care.

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            Your joking right? The right to life, has NOTHING to do with your healthcare. Boy, You really don’t wanna take responsibility for shit do you? The right to LIFE, means you have the right to LIVE. That NO man has the RIGHT to kill you. It doesn’t guarantee you that you won’t get sick!

            I’ve got to be honest with you… This’s the funniest shit I’ve ever heard! I can see that you went through school AFTER they quit teaching The Constitution in our schools.

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            I could say the same for you, basement dweller. You subsist solely on hatred, and claim it’s “personal responsibility” when what the truth really is, is “the poor don’t deserve to eat or be helped up, because the people who would actually be forced to pay for it have convinced me that it would come out of MY paycheck, therefore I hate them for needing help. ”
            Incidentally, scumbag, they haven’t stopped teaching the Constitution in public schools, at least not where my kids go. That’s yet another hate-building lie spread by right wing scum intended to make them hate education so there’s more people to blame for your shitty attitude.

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            ROFLMAO! Look out! Your LIBERALNESS is starting to show!

            Whenever Liberals don’t have an argument, they start calling you names! 9 INSULTS in 1 paragraph! ROFLMAO! That’s GOT to be close to a record!

            I said they had quit teaching it when YOU went to school!

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            You actually ALREADY have the “RIGHT to Healthcare” in America. It’s FEDERAL LAW that EVERYONE that enters an Emergency room, MUST BE TREATED! They MUST be returned to a “Stable condition”. So you HAVE the RIGHT to Healthcare!

            YOU just don’t wanna have to PAY them for their services! That’s what it boils down to! You want FREE Healthcare! You just don’t wanna PAY anyone for anything. Why don’t you admit it!

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            You’ve finely proved that you really don’t know what a democratic socialist is, though. Because you’re dead wrong.

      •  

        Wrong. We have unchecked capitalism. Read history, Reagan stuck the knife into the middle class. The war on drugs. Trickle down economics. Breaking the unions. Big money owns congress now. You want more? Not me! I don’t want over half our budget spent on the military. There has to be change. I hope it comes by ballot. But history says it won’t be so nice.

  21.  

    If Sanders hasn’t figured out marijuana by now he never will.

  22.  

    This is a typical problem with politicians. Whats wrong with telling the truth about how you feel? Why should everything be about polls and trying to please everyone? It doesn’t matter what a politician says cause you cant believe its how they really feel. Not until they are elected. This is the MAIN reason Trump is winning and surging. He may not be popular with everyone but you sure DO KNOW how he feels about everything. I like that. I like someone with the balls to say what they feel regardless what everyone else does.

  23.  

    There are way more important issues than legalization of weed. You stoners should watch the news at least once in awhile.

    •  

      It’s a form of discrimination. It also takes away your god given right to choose what goes in your body. Additionally, it’s often used as a tool to incarcerate minorities despite usage rates among whites a full 10 points higher. Not to mention that usage has increased over 950% since 1969. 1.5 trillion federal dollars has been wasted on marijuana enforcement not including local government tax dollars. 3/4 of a million people are incarcerated each year for a non-violent “crime”. All for a substance that has zero fatal overdoses, and 114 times safer than alcohol.

      That’s why it’s a big topic. Anyone who thinks we need to keep the status quo, really should be evaluated from the neck up, because the status quo is insanity!

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      This is the typical attitude that has allowed it to have remained illegal for so long.

      Do YOU watch the news? i don’t personally watch news ‘programming’ on a regular basis. You know, it was not nearly as mainstream before Dr. sanjay Gupta of CNN talked about the real truths of cannabis previously left to mainstream hearsay instead of scientific fact. one needs only look around to know we have problems, the difference is a lot of people tend to focus on being informed of the most recent issues when the minorities do not have that luxury because they ARE discriminated against. there are countless ways this can be demonstrated. For lack of a better simple explanation, Cannabis smoking is a non-violent crime. a person is at more risk of death from aspirin than they are of cannabis and indeed more people die yearly from aspirin than cannabis. what’s more? its been found to be HIGHLY medicinal containing several different types of medicinal substances. the list can go on and on and on and while the research is still blowing in rapidly, we know much more research needs to be done to fully understand the use of the plant. Who is to say one should be restricted from the recreational use of marijuana when alcohol is found to be more destructive and dangerous?

      and when all of this is added up, one would think the government either insane or conspiracy. why not? the people themselves are evidently sheep who know not what they discriminate but that is not to say the cannabis user is much better but at least they would have ‘medicine’ for that. When considering my vote for an elected official, this level of absurdity is at the top of my list as common sense required before receiving my vote, let alone a citizen shown not to be a sheep but as it would seem, it is unfortunate that a large majority struggle to even know that level of common sense and is exemplified by the ‘popular’ presidential candidates views on this.

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      Furthermore, several statistics such as crime and DUI rates have dropped significantly in Colorado/Washington as a result of these changes. I think we are more serious about worldly matters than you would have believe, the difference is we are the ones attempting to make a positive change while going against the current of sheep like you.

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