Safer Michigan Coalition Post Election Statement
We shout out our grateful thanks to the voters in all of the Michigan cities who voted Nov. 4 for cannabis law reform. These voters showed patriotism, wisdom, and courage. They affirmed common sense and American values. They won’t accept the budgetary or human costs of perpetuating “Reefer Madness” myths. They don’t want their tax dollars wasted, and they know that laws against cannabis are much more dangerous to society than cannabis. They know that pot never killed anyone, and they are watching heroin and methamphetamine become a deadly part of Michigan life.
Reality is the opposite of “Reefer Madness”. We have seen that in states where cannabis is available, that death from opioid drugs drop 25%, traffic deaths drop about 9%, suicide drops, violent crime drops, and teen pot use goes down.
MICHIGAN VOTERS ARE CLEARLY READY FOR MAJOR MARIJUANA POLICY REFORM. A policy as misguided as cannabis prohibition must end when it is clear that voters don’t support it!
*We gratefully thank the local campaign leaders* in all eleven cities where we made the November ballot. In the finest First Amendment tradition, and at great personal sacrifice, they brought petitions to the voters. One signature at a time they did the very hard work of putting marijuana law reform on Michigan ballots. These activists are heroic, since fighting against Drug War and the Prison Industrial Complex is the great human rights struggle of our time. We are proud to be associated with these excellent local leaders who gave their voters a voice! Leaders in eight other Michigan cities, working with the Safer Michigan Coalition, are already preparing for ballot initiatives in 2015.
More than 20 million Americans have been arrested for marijuana since 1965. Every 40 seconds an American is deprived of their liberty, criminalized and stigmatized, because they enjoy a plant that is far less harmful than alcohol, cigarettes, prescription drugs, or junk food. Cannabis became illegal in 1937 because of a government campaign of outlandish lies. This prohibition has been perpetuated as an illegitimate mechanism of racism, cultural war, and Anti-American social control. Cannabis prohibition is a shame upon the USA, undercutting the legitimacy of government and respect for law enforcement. It makes a mockery of core American values like freedom, liberty and justice.
Professional polling shows that the vast majority of Michigan voters want marijuana legalized or decriminalized. On Nov. 4, 2014 Michigan voters have made their opinion clear again. Twenty-two votes for cannabis law reform, in 18 different Michigan cities over the past 10 years, convey a mandate. Cannabis prohibition must end.
OCTOBER CAMPAIGN UPDATE: SAFER MICHIGAN COALITION CAMPAIGNS FOR NOVEMBER 4, 2014
Cannabis law reform won on the ballot in Hazel Park in the August primary with 63% in favor, and in Oak Park with 53%. Oak Park was too close for comfort, but so many people had told us we were going to lose. These victories were made possible by the incredibly dedicated Andrew Cissell and Debra Young. At the moment of this writing, we still have a couple of court battles going on, but local leaders in 11 Michigan cities have officially qualified for the November 4 ballot. It is a legalization question that we are putting on the ballot this year- legalization by exemption. The marijuana laws of the city stay in place, except that if you have one ounce or less and you are 21 years old and you are on private property, you are exempted from the law. This petition was created by Tim Beck, and approved by the Michigan Supreme Court. On the ballot for November 4 we have: Saginaw, Frankfort, Pleasant Ridge, Harrison, Clare, Mt. Pleasant, Berkley, Huntington Woods, Port Huron, Lapeer and Onaway. We already have four or five cities ready for 2015. If you live near one of the cities above please write a well worded letter to the editor to a local newspaper. Please do this! We have no money to run campaigns. We plan to win in every city and it is imperative that we win in every city. Patriotic Michigan voters have both intelligence and compassion; they believe in liberty and justice for all, and the great majority of them are totally finished with supporting cannabis prohibition. All we do is give the voters a voice. In a democracy, government is supposed to heed the voice of the voters, and public policy is supposed to reflect what they say at the polling place.