Legalize it


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Legalize it

  1. 1. Drug Policy Decriminalization Medical Legalization
  2. 2. District Attorney Seth Williams “We have to be smart on crime. We can't declare a war on drugs by going after the kid who's smoking a joint on 55th Street. We have to go after the large traffickers.” $200, $300 dollar fines for less than 30 grams of marijuana, no
  3. 3. DA Williams' Comment Sparked Advocates Imaginations We are not decriminalizing marijuana -- any effort like that would be one for the legislature to undertake. The penalty available for these minimal amount offenses remains exactly the same. What we are doing is properly dealing with cases involving minimal amounts of marijuana in the most efficient and cost effective process possible. Those arrested for these offenses will still be restrained, identified and processed by police in police custody. They will still have to answer to the charges, but they will be doing so in a speedier and more efficient process. We want to use valuable court resources in the best way possible and we believe that means giving minor drug offenders the option of getting into diversionary programs, get drug education or enter drug treatment centers. Again we are NOT decriminalizing marijuana, and the penalty for these offenses remains the same."
  4. 4. Decriminalization To reduce or abolish criminal penalties for an act that was previously deemed illegal Most commonly it replaces a misdemeanor charge (i.e. w/ criminal record and court proceedings) with disorderly conduct (a minimal fine. $100 in massachusetts, for example)
  5. 5. National
  6. 6. Regulated Markets? Gonzales v. Raich (previously Ashcroft v. Raich), 545 U.S. 1 (2005), was a case in which the United States Supreme Court ruled on June 6, 2005 that under the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution, which allows the United States Congress "To regulate Commerce... among the several States," Congress may ban the use of cannabis even where states approve its use for medicinal purposes.
  7. 7. The government Medical Marijuana contends that consuming one's locally grown marijuana for medical purposes affects the interstate market of marijuana, and hence that the federal government may regulate —and prohibit —such consumption.
  8. 8. The Interstate Commerce Clause The government contended that consuming one's locally grown marijuana for medical purposes affects the interstate market of marijuana, and hence that the federal government may regulate— and prohibit—such consumption. Obama opposes federal government intervention if state law allows medical consumption; DEA raids in Colorado and California have still occurred
  9. 9. “I think consumption is down. But that's only one of the measures as to whether or not we're getting a handle on the drug problem.” Eric Holder “It will not be a priority to use federal resources to prosecute patients with serious illnesses or their caregivers who are complying with state laws on medical marijuana, but we will not tolerate drug traffickers who hide behind claims of compliance with state law to mask activities that are clearly illegal." "The answer is, no, I don't think that is a good strategy to grow our economy." -Barack Obama
  10. 10. Cocaine $17,000–$28,000/kilogram Cost of Drugs $70–$125/gram. Crack cocaine $800–$1,600/ounce $70/gram Heroin $95,000–$105,000/kilogram $65–$300/gram Marijuana $800–$2,500/pound $25/one-eighth ounce Methamphetamine $8,000–$20,000/kilogram $42–$175/gram Source:
  11. 11. When there's a demand... The study estimates that marijuana production, at a value of $35.8 billion, exceeds the combined value of corn ($23.3 billion) and wheat ($7.5 billion) .
  12. 12. State
  13. 13. Locke's State of War It's always difficult to pinpoint specific To protect property factors that carry the lion's share of the rights, people sign blame for gun violence in Philadelphia, but a few generally seem to rise to the social contracts with top. These include open-air, illicit drug markets, alcohol outlets, and availability governments to of illegal firearms. Illegal drugs likely relate to violence brought about by provide an impartial trafficking and, to some degree, actual judge in adjudicating usage of illegal drugs. Illegal guns and the way these guns get into criminal the affairs. They enter hands is also likely important. this contract to -Charles Branas, PhD, PhD, Assistant prevent having to Professor of Epidemiology and Senior Scholar in the CCEB and Lead enter the state of war Epidemiologist in the Firearm and Injury Center at Penn (FICAP) to protect one's possessions.
  14. 14. John Locke's Right To Property “If the innocent honest man must quietly quit all he has, “He that so employed for peace sake, to him who his pains about any will lay violent hands upon of the spontaneous it, I desire it may be products of considered, what a kind of placing peace there will be in the world, which consists only any of his labor on in violence and rapine; and them did thereby which is to be maintained acquire a propriety only for the benefit of in them.” robbers and oppressors.”
  15. 15. Statement from ONDCP Director R. Gil Kerlikowske Why Marijuana Legalization Would Compromise Public Health and Public Safety “You all know the impacts of marijuana in this state– from the proliferation of marijuana being grown on public lands and indoor grows, to the negative effects of marijuana use among youth, the increasing influence of violent gangs on the marijuana trade, and the problems associated with medical marijuana dispensaries.” “Controls and prohibitions help to keep prices higher, and higher prices help keep use rates relatively low.” “In the United States, illegal drugs already cost $180 billion a year in health care, lost productivity, crime, and other expenditures.”
  16. 16. Health, Work, and Your Rights
  17. 17. "Law enforcement will never solve this problem. We will never arrest our way out of this problem”- Police Commissioner Sylvester Johnson "We're not going to stop locking people up" -Lt. Frank Vanore
  18. 18. Incarceration Executive Office of the President, Office of National Drug Control Policy Incarceration of offenders for drug- related crimes is the largest cost component of drug abuse at $39 billion in 2002, or about 21.7 percent of total costs. These costs rose from $17.9 billion in 1992 to $30 billion in 2002. Costs increased by 8.1 percent annually between 1992 and 2002 due in almost equal measures to increases in the number of incarcerated drug offenders and wage increases.
  19. 19. Operation Safe Streets Operation Safe Streets Developed in May 2002, the purpose of this Mayoral initiative is to build coalitions to end the violence, disorder and human tragedies associated with the sale of illegal drugs and drug addiction.
  20. 20. 1998
  21. 21. 1999
  22. 22. 2000
  23. 23. 2001
  24. 24. 2002
  25. 25. 2003
  26. 26. 2004
  27. 27. 2005
  28. 28. 2006
  29. 29. Drug Demand
  30. 30. Treatment
  31. 31. Reducing Teen Use?
  32. 32. "Prohibition goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man's appetite by legislation and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded." -Abraham Lincoln