I Will End Marijuana Prohibition in New Jersey

The government says marijuana is bad, so its use is illegal and offenders are frequently thrown in prison. The government says alcohol, tobacco, fast food, not exercising and a host of other things we consume or do are also bad, but they are not banned or deemed illegal.

There is a serious problem in this country with what has been referred to as “the nanny state.”  Defined as a government that makes numerous laws about how people should live their lives, it usually describes people elected to public office who engage in overprotective legislation which severely restricts the freedoms and private activities of the citizens.  Sometimes, the public officials base their restrictive, regulative actions on a belief that they have a higher moral standing. Libertarians wonder what gives these politicians the right to say what an ordinary citizen, who is not causing harm to another, can and cannot do in his or her own home.

There is a new drive by some in government to “legalize marijuana”, but most current plans resemble a Trojan horse, in side of which is a plan to over-regulate and “tax the hell out of” it. Things like cigarettes and alcohol have a judgmental sin tax added to their purchase. That means this country’s elected officials find the consumption of these items to be sins; a bible reference that means an immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law. This gives self-righteous, elected officials the ability to tax and over tax these substances on their self-defined, moral grounds.

My plan for New Jersey is not complicated: Marijuana will be legal for adult consumption, cultivation, distribution, or for whatever reason the consumer deems fit. It should remain a crime to distribute to a minor, except for a parent administering it for medical purposes. There will be no taxes on the substance, nor should anyone be required to get a license or permit from the government to consume, cultivate or distribute it. We do not need permits to grow dandelions or tomatoes in our backyard, it seems natural that we shouldn’t need a permit to grow this plant. One of my first actions upon becoming Governor will be to end the prohibition of cannabis in New Jersey and NOT tax it!

In a future blog, I will discuss how alcohol prohibition in the 1920’s brought about organized crime and how the drug war has brought about modern-day gang violence. I will also discuss how opioids became legal, yet medical Marijuana became an illegal drug.

Peter Rohrman

Libertarian Candidate for New Jersey Governor