Melissa Etheridge has always been very vocal about her support for legalizing marijuana, and she’s at it again.
The breast cancer survivor penned an open letter after reading a report from the ACLU called The War on Marijuana in Black and White: Billions of Dollars Wasted on Racially Biased Arrests.
The report documents the lopsided numbers among different races in drug-related arrests.
The singer sums up what she took away from the report in her lengthy letter, which states:
“Many people are being arrested and their lives affected forever, sometimes devastated, because of marijuana possession.
People use marijuana for different reasons, and I needed it to get me through tough times. I used it every day during chemo: It gave me an appetite so I was able to eat and keep my strength up. It also helped with the depression, and it eased the gastrointestinal pain.
I have been a medicinal marijuana smoker for nine years now. I find relief from the gastrointestinal effects of the chemo even now. I find it helps with regulating my sleep. I also enjoy it before I watch Game of Thrones…
The state of fear in which these laws were created has changed. Educated people have experienced pot or they understand that research has shown that while marijuana use is not entirely safe, its dangers have been grossly overstated…
Common sense tells me that kids smoking pot is not a good idea. Just like sex, you can handle it when you are mature enough to respect it.
So as a mother and a rock star I find myself asking, are we ready to trust ourselves and our children in a world where the sale and use of cannabis is legal?
I believe it is time to shine a light on the old "Reefer Madness" fears. Let's legitimize cannabis sales so that our youth are as protected from illegal pot as they are from illegal alcohol and tobacco sales. Legitimize the growers so that pot can have regulations and I know I am supporting American businesses and not outlaws when I purchase it.
The legalization of pot is making sense. It will create a real business form and take the lawlessness out of its sale and distribution.
The ACLU report on racial bias in pot possession arrests is enlightening. The fact that people of color are arrested four times more often than whites is disturbing. This imbalance is coming to a head. We can be the generation that makes the change. We live in a nation that holds freedom as a sacred right.
Our great Constitution challenges us to grow constantly Let's put an end to marijuana prohibition and get clear regulations on the legal sale of pot. The benefits might surprise us.”
Melissa makes some pretty compelling points, and the arrest numbers can’t be overlooked.
If marijuana is here, which it has been for decades, they should definitely find a better way to regulate it.
Keep banging the drum Melissa! People are listening.
[Image via WENN.]
Tags: aclu, drugs, legal matters, legalize marijuana, melissa etheridge, politik, the war on marijuana in black and white billions of dollars wasted on racially biased arrests