One of my old college professors is infatuated with United States Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. That professor has published several books dealing with female Supreme Court Justices, and recently published one specifically about the legal opinions that Justice Sotomayor has issued during her career. That college professor was my favorite when I was in college, and I still seek her advice to this day. As a result, I have always been a Sotomayor fan a little bit.
So it was very disheartening to watch a video during which Justice Sotomayor made a snarky comment about marijuana legalization. The video was recorded during a speaking session Justice Sotomayor participated in at Amherst. Justice Sotomayor was giving a very passionate speech about the need to restore faith in government. She talked about her involvement in the civil rights movement, and the need for college students to vote.
She then started to talk about passion, and the need for college students to be passionate about something. She then says that they can be passionate about marijuana legalization, but…then says ‘eh’ and shrugs her shoulders as to suggest that the issue isn’t that important. To be fair she did go on to say that there have been people that have been passionate about it, and have ‘accomplished things’ but in a way that completely understates the achievements of cannabis activists. Below is the video I’m talking about, which was put on YouTube by the amazing activist Tom Angell:
In order to restore faith in government, and in order to engage college students and to get them to be passionate about social justice, I can’t think of a better way to do all of those things than to fight for marijuana reform. Justice Sotomayor said in her speech that people need to believe that their government is doing the right thing. How is prohibiting cannabis a good thing? Especially considering the racial injustices that marijuana prohibition perpetuates. I hope that someone is able to pull Justice Sotomayor to the side and explain to her that she is too smart to think of marijuana reform as a ho-hum issue. It’s far from that. Marijuana prohibition has ruined many, many lives, and specifically has prevented many people from going to college because they had their financial aid revoked due to a marijuana charge. Marijuana legalization is a serious issue, which Justice Sotomayor should be well aware of.