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posted by martyb on Wednesday August 02 2017, @12:39PM   Printer-friendly
from the smoke-screen? dept.

New Jersey Senator Cory Booker has introduced a bill (alt) that has been described by Marijuana Majority as the most far-reaching marijuana bill ever filed in either chamber of Congress. It would legalize cannabis federally by removing "marihuana" and tetrahydrocannabinols from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. But it would go much further by withholding money from states with racially or financially disparate arrest and incarceration rates for cannabis-related crimes (effectively all states where cannabis is illegal):

The bill would legalize marijuana at the federal level and withhold federal money for building jails and prisons, along with other funds, from states whose cannabis laws are shown to disproportionately incarcerate minorities.

Under the legislation, federal convictions for marijuana use and possession would be expunged and prisoners serving time for a marijuana offense would be entitled to a sentencing hearing.

Those "aggrieved" by a disproportionate arrest or imprisonment rate would be able to sue, according to the bill. And a Community Reinvestment Fund would be established to "reinvest in communities most affected by the war on drugs" for everything from re-entry programs to public libraries.

Booker says that he will work towards bipartisan support for the bill.

Serious legalization attempt or just advertising for a 2020 U.S. Presidential Campaign?


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  • (Score: 2) by richtopia on Wednesday August 02 2017, @03:38PM (6 children)

    by richtopia (3160) on Wednesday August 02 2017, @03:38PM (#547957) Homepage Journal

    I'm not sure if quota is the correct term, as it is looking at proportion of arrests by race. I suppose this could turn into a white person quota if historical trends of arresting minorities continues, until the end of the month when someone realizes that federal funding will be lost without more white arrests.

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  • (Score: 0, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 02 2017, @03:51PM (5 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 02 2017, @03:51PM (#547963)

    Yeah, what will they do. Let thugs roam the streets or fill jails with innocent people to fullfill the statistics quota?

    withholding money from states with racially or financially disparate arrest and incarceration rates for cannabis-related crimes

    There IS one problem here. If "brown people" commit more drug related crimes then those places can't get funding. A brutal solution is to make brown peoples life so miserable so they leave the state. In essence if the majority of brown people are expelled then mostly white people will get arrested and they can get funding.
    Booker didn't think of that perverted incentive did he? :-)

    Another way is to make the test show that the substance is something else like cocaine. And viola.. arrest rates for cannabis goes down. Magic.

    • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 02 2017, @04:25PM (4 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 02 2017, @04:25PM (#547981)

      Yeah, what will they do. Let thugs roam the streets or fill jails with innocent people to fullfill the statistics quota?

      Oh fuck you and the strawman you rode in on.

      racially or financially disparate arrest and incarceration rates for cannabis-related crimes

      As in, if you catch 10 white people and 10 black people using cannabis, but arrest 2 whites and 10 blacks, your arrest rate is racist, to the tune of 5-to-1. If you catch 10 white people and 1000 black people, but arrest 5 whites and 500 blacks, your arrest rate is not discriminatory.

      Do you understand, or do I need smaller words and a few crayon pictures?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 02 2017, @05:14PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 02 2017, @05:14PM (#548009)

        It might do some good if you did. Subtle details are hard to fathom after all. So let's just lump the whole thing together, call it a 'sin' and not have to worry about it ever again, right?

      • (Score: 5, Informative) by Thexalon on Wednesday August 02 2017, @06:23PM (2 children)

        by Thexalon (636) on Wednesday August 02 2017, @06:23PM (#548035)

        And the actual numbers:
        Approximately 12% of white Americans, and 14% of black Americans respond in polls that they've used MJ. That means that there are about 25 million white MJ users, and 7 million black MJ users. So, if the arrests were proportional, we'd expect that about 3.5 times as many white people as black people would be arrested for dope. In fact, about half of the 575,000 arrests for pot were of black people, which means you're about 3-4 times more likely to be caught with dope if you're black.

        And of course, because it's a possession crime, just because there's pot, a cop, and a person being arrested doesn't mean that the person being arrested was the one who brought the pot.

        --
        The only thing that stops a bad guy with a compiler is a good guy with a compiler.
        • (Score: 0, Flamebait) by Entropy on Thursday August 03 2017, @12:30AM (1 child)

          by Entropy (4228) on Thursday August 03 2017, @12:30AM (#548181)

          1 What if black people are worse criminals, and get caught more?
          2 What if black people are caught using marijuana because they were involved in some other crime which they are more likely per capita to commit?(like rape, or murder, or domestic violence)
          3 What if the poll about illegal drug use had one race lie more than the other? I'm pretty sure the percentage of any race trying marijuana in the US is a ton higher than 12-14%.

          • (Score: 2) by hemocyanin on Thursday August 03 2017, @03:17AM

            by hemocyanin (186) on Thursday August 03 2017, @03:17AM (#548210) Journal

            1) What if you were an asshole?
            2) What if you were a giant asshole?
            3) What if you were a goatse scale asshole?