In September Toledo, Ohio voters approved a marijuana decriminalization measure by a very wide margin. Even before the vote occurred, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine made it very clear that he would sue the City of Toledo if the measure passed. Mr. DeWine made good on that threat last week when he filed the lawsuit. So much for democracy, right? Per Cleveland.Com:
DeWine asked the Lucas County Court of Common Pleas to invalidate several portions of Toledo’s “Sensible Marihuana Ordinance” approved by voters last month because they contradict Ohio law.
The new ordinance, which passed with 70 percent of the vote, kept marijuana use illegal but reduced penalties for cultivating or possessing marijuana to no jail time and no fine.
“This ordinance encourages drug cartels to set up marijuana distribution operations in Toledo with less fear of prison or penalties,” DeWine said in a news release. “Absent legal action, it is not hard to imagine international drug rings making Toledo their regional base of operations.”
So according to Mike DeWine’s logical reasoning, every city and state that has decriminalized marijuana should be overrun with marijuana growing cartels right? My home state, Oregon, was the first to ever decriminalize marijuana. While there is a cartel presence here, it’s not because of marijuana. All of the marijuana I saw prior to legalization was grown by hardworking Oregonians, and in mass quantities. So much so that marijuana is basically too cheap here for cartels to be interested. Is there even one real world example that Mike DeWine can point to, because after all, there are a lot of areas in America where marijuana has been decriminalized.
No one should be arrested for marijuana. No one should have their vote nullified because an Attorney General of a state can’t let go of his reefer-madness-loving past. What happens if Issue 3 passes next month? Does the lawsuit go away? Wouldn’t it have been better to wait and see how the initiative vote winds up? To me this just seems like more of a political stunt than an actual lawsuit aimed at fixing a problem, because after all, no problem exists with Toledo’s marijuana decriminalization measure, proven by the landslide victory during the local election.