Jul 222013
 July 22, 2013

Legalize Marijuana legalization cannabis prohibition tea partyBy John Payne

On Thursday, 7/18, I attended a debate sponsored by the Saint Louis Tea Party on marijuana legalization. Bill Hennessy, who helped found the group and has written extensively on reasons conservatives should support legalization, argued in favor, and Saint Louis City Republican Committeeman Mike Chance argued against. However, there wasn’t as much disagreement on the topic as you might expect at a debate.

Chance said that there is absolutely no reason to continue prohibiting the industrial and medical uses of cannabis, and that the ultimate goal should be to treat recreational use the same way we treat the recreational use of alcohol today. He was primarily concerned with exactly how legalization would be implemented, and particularly wanted to make sure there was an effective way to enforce laws against driving under the influence of cannabis.

Hennessy said that his support for legalization primarily derives from his consistent support of individual rights and liberty, but he also believes legalization would lead to substantial economic and social benefits.

The crowd overwhelmingly seemed to support legalization, but some did express reservations about increased use. The moderator was kind enough to give me the last word, so I used the opportunity to address those concerns, arguing that the data indicate that use of cannabis is completely unrelated to whether it is prohibited.

Overall, I found the event very encouraging, as it shows that we are making substantial inroads with conservative groups, and that the support for legalization in Missouri is strong and growing stronger every day.

Continue building support for legalization across the political spectrum by contributing now!

Source: National Cannabis Coalitionmake a donation

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About Johnny Green

Johnny Green is a marijuana activist from Oregon. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Public Policy. Follow Johnny Green on Facebook and Twitter. Also, feel free to email any concerns.
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Matt-McLaughlin/100000039777325 Matt McLaughlin

    Best is how Calif has it>barley illegal. That way it ain’t taxed and your hard earned coin ain’t going to some cop’s pension.

    • jontomas

      How can you say that considering all the horrific California persecutions like this one?

      http://www.theweedblog.com/superior-court-judge-denies-medical-marijuana-collective-cultivation-defense/

    • Sean

      You just admitted that you are a prohibitionist.

      • Matt McLaughlin

        If the physical/doctor’s visit is $100, and the Recommendation another $100>good for only a year>why not just chance?
        $100 infraction ticket for less than an OZ?>where nothing goes on your record?>same as a j-walking ticket. you must be rich.

    • Jeffrey Snyder

      the med pot is taxed

  • Joe Voll

    The Tea Party is what killed Prop 19 and all the other failed legalization initiatives and medical marijuana initiatives.

    • Phil R

      Wrong. While they certainly contributed to Prop 19′s demise, there were plenty of other groups that voted against it to keep the status quo. For instance, those already deeply invested in growing and distribution.

      • jontomas

        Yes. It’s rather sickening to see the greed-driven sector of growers and vendors parade themselves as part of the marijuana culture, when they are simply fleecing, and aiding the persecution of, its members.

    • Jeffrey Snyder

      Koch Industries Inc., owned by two brothers who have bankrolled the Tea Party movement…they are the two richest brothers on the planet..the tea party is not real..it was invented by the two brothers to represent their business interest…i do not care what party somebody is in…if they support weed legalization i am going to vote for them..for 35 years i have voted for the Libertarian party…Gary Johnson was their last runner for president and had one of the best records in the united states as a governor..if a smaller race did not have a Libertarian in it i would skip voting for one or the other as i see democrats and republicans as one in the same..they together have put us where we are today..i hate them both however this time i am going to study up and vote for the one that backs legalization..study is the key word this time..if the ones that run for president do not support legalization i will spit in their face again by voting for the Libertarian again as always.

  • http://www.facebook.com/marlin.hauer Marlin Hauer

    Speaking from a retired correctional officer’s viewpoint,…Almost ALL convicted crimes committed involve drugs, and/or alcohol…Has anyone thought of the cost involving THAT?…I say medical treatment ONLY, pull their drivers license, and have medical personnel administer it as needed at a clinic in a “smoke room”…

    • Jeffrey Snyder

      we are not trying to legalize alcohol so you shouldn’t be tying it to weed..also you used the word drugs..by using that word you must mean hard drugs..yes they cause crime because they are illegal..they shouldn’t be but i will save that discussion for another day..the people in jail for weed are in there because they got caught with a little weed on them..they were not doing anything wrong but just got unlucky because they had some weed in their pocket..why should that be a crime? why should it bother you that when they get home they want to have a few puffs instead of drinking beer..to much beer sometimes makes people do some crazy things..to much weed leaves you asleep on the couch..really, what business of yours is it that somebody smokes instead of drinking alcohol? by not arresting people that were doing nothing wrong except having a little pot on them would clear out the jail cells and save a pile of wasted money..you should know this..i think you are a liar, control freak and a stick in the mud..i call you a liar because you have never been a officer of any kind..everything you said is either stupid or a lie..you piss me off