Just as we are making some substantive progress in examining our absurd laws concerning marijuana, and the failed War on Drugs in general, this asshole comes along to buck the trend.
And I mean he really bucks it.
Just days after Massachusetts Democrat Rep. Barney Frank, along with 13 cosponsors, reintroduced HR 2835, the Medical Marijuana Patient Protection Act of 2009 in Congress, Republican Rep. Mark Kirk (Illinois) has called for federal legislation to sentence certain first-time marijuana offenders to up to 25 years in prison.
Apparently, this asshole didn't read Nicholas Kristof's op-ed piece in the New York Times only two days ago:
Here in the United States, four decades of drug war have had three consequences:
First, we have vastly increased the proportion of our population in prisons. The United States now incarcerates people at a rate nearly five times the world average. In part, that’s because the number of people in prison for drug offenses rose roughly from 41,000 in 1980 to 500,000 today. Until the war on drugs, our incarceration rate was roughly the same as that of other countries.
Second, we have empowered criminals at home and terrorists abroad. One reason many prominent economists have favored easing drug laws is that interdiction raises prices, which increases profit margins for everyone, from the Latin drug cartels to the Taliban. Former presidents of Mexico, Brazil and Colombia this year jointly implored the United States to adopt a new approach to narcotics, based on the public health campaign against tobacco.
Third, we have squandered resources. Jeffrey Miron, a Harvard economist, found that federal, state and local governments spend $44.1 billion annually enforcing drug prohibitions. We spend seven times as much on drug interdiction, policing and imprisonment as on treatment. (Of people with drug problems in state prisons, only 14 percent get treatment.)
Or maybe Rep. Kirk did read it and doesn't care. Maybe he just doesn't like Rep. Barney Frank and decided to have a childish "I'll show YOU" moment.
Whatever. Way to go in showing the country and the world what a stupendous, self-righteous and out-of-touch idiot you are, Rep. Kirk.
Crossposted at B3