...despite opposition, pressure is building nationwide to address the problems caused by the federal war on drugs. The U.S. Conference of Mayors, for example, recently adopted a resolution unanimously blasting the war as a “failure.”
As opponents of the federal drug war point out, the U.S. government does not have any authority under the Constitution to ban substances, harmful or otherwise. That’s why alcohol prohibition required a constitutional amendment. So, under the Tenth Amendment, regulation of drugs necessarily falls under the purview of the states or the people.
“The war against marijuana causes so much hardship and accomplishes nothing,” Rep. Paul said during an interview about the proposal, noting that marijuana is helpful to many cancer patients. “We knew prohibition of alcohol was very bad, so this is just getting back to a sensible position on how we handle difficult problems.”
The 2012 GOP presidential candidate also said a trillion dollars had already been spent to fight the war on drugs. “And it’s a catastrophe, just as prohibition of alcohol was a catastrophe,” he explained. “Kids today have an easier time finding marijuana than they can alcohol.”
Liberal Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts, who introduced the bill with Paul, also blasted federal policies on the substance. "Criminally prosecuting adults for making the choice to smoke marijuana is a waste of law enforcement resources and an intrusion on personal freedom," he told reporters.
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