Opinion written by George McClellan:
The push is on to legalize marijuana in America and a few states have already complied with the demand. They are in violation of Federal Law, specifically the Harrison Narcotics Tax Act.
The Harrison Narcotics Tax Act was approved by Congress on 17 December, 1914, 102 years ago. It involved “a special tax on all persons who produce, import, manufacture, compound, deal in, dispense, sell, distribute, or give away opium or coca leaves, their salts, derivatives, or preparations, and for other purposes.” (to include marijuana). States and communities who permit the growing, sale and manufacturing of MJ products do so in violation of this Act.
The Controlled Substances Act (CSA), is Title II of the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970. It is the legal foundation upon which the government’s desperate fight against the abuse of drugs and other substances, i.e.: “The War on Drugs,” is waged.
The Controlled Substance Act, is the statute prescribing US federal drug policy under which the manufacture, importation, possession, use and distribution of certain substances is regulated in an effort to categorize regulated drugs based on their potential for abuse.
However, the War on Drugs has exceeded its original intent fostering the growth of organized crime, causing the militarization of police departments that are now filling up our prisons with non-violent offenders, as well as providing excuses for the unconstitutional confiscation of a persons money and property by the enforcers, not the courts. Once seized it’s seized forever.
Government grows on itself and so long as a law exists allowing government to felonize simple marijuana use, the social fabric of America will be further weakened than it is today. Too, local police, conducting actions contrary to the 4th and 5th amendments of the constitution, are basically moving away from their original mission which is to protect and serve.
The Federal Law Enforcement bureaucracy has grown exponentially as a result, spending more and more of the tax payers money just to stay in business. Alarmed at the soaring coat of drug enforcement, states have allowed police departments to confiscate peoples cash and property, often on manufactured pretext, so as to help defray the cost of their subjugation.
The Harrison Narcotics Tax act is, in fact a “Tax Act.” It should be enforced that way or done away with. I see, as a suitable enforcement solution, an idea that utilizes that singular fact, that it is indeed a tax. For example, an officer stops a driver for erratic driving and it turns out he is under the influence of marijuana. He’s arrested, same as a drunk driver besotted with alcohol (a legal substance by the way), and is taken to jail. Normal procedure. Here’s the enforcement difference. The arresting officer should also demand of the arrestee proof he paid his tax. Lacking that, the offender would face an additional and separate offense, tax evasion, a job for the local tax department to work out. A drunk driver will have already paid tax on his bottle of alcohol so, why cannot this same enforcement action be applied to marijuana users as well?
Finally, every police investigation into the growing of marijuana should include the tax man, not SWAT teams. It’s time to think out of the box. This damn war on drugs is stealing away our rights and our liberties. They must be protected. Note, I speak only about marijuana even though all evidence shows it does cause lasting harm on users minds. More on this later.
Remember, freedom is the goal, the Constitution is the way, now, go get ‘em! (3 Dec 2016)