Thursday, March 03, 2016

Probably just could skip this step altogether

If you want to legalize marijuana, maybe let's just go ahead and do it rather than sit in this odd limbo where discriminatory abuses are practically inevitable.
Under the revised ordinance, the first time someone is convicted of possessing marijuana they would be fined $40, the second time would yield a $60 fine and the third an $80 fine. Fourth and subsequent convictions would be punished with a $100.

Those penalties would reset if someone went two or more years without a conviction.

Because nothing the city does can override state law, police officers would be able to use either the city ordinance or state law if they come on someone in possession of marijuana.

Councilman Jared Brossett said he had concerns about that policy, since it could allow officers to discriminate against minorities by slapping them with the stiffer state penalties.

Guidry has said that the city’s experience with it’s current pot possession ordinance, which allows officers to issue a summons rather than taking a suspect to jail, has shown that the New Orleans Police Department is not using that discretion in a discriminatory way.
Not so sure about that, Susan. I mean it definitely sounds like these guys have ideas about how the law should be applied that are borderline at best. 
Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand and Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro issued stern warnings Tuesday (Feb. 23) to New Orleans city leaders pushing local police agencies to ease up on enforcement of the state's marijuana possession laws.

"This drug-legalization issue is absolutely incredible," Normand said at the Metropolitan Crime Commission's annual awards luncheon. "You want us out of the drug business? We're out. But I guarantee you this: More policemen will live and more of you will die. Bank on it."

Cannizzaro agreed, saying drug demand in New Orleans would "skyrocket" if enforcement is relaxed. 
The general momentum out there suggests that legalization is coming sooner or later either way.  So, unless you want to to put up with more aggressive stupidity from the Normands and Cannizzaros of the world, let's just get it over with now. 

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