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Tuesday, August 9, 2022

This must end: Texas Ag commissioner calls for expanded marijuana use

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Austin (KXAN) – Increasingly like Texas Indication of their acceptance Of the legalization of marijuana, Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller, a Republican, said he supports expanding access to medical marijuana and nodded to conservative states that have legalized the drug for adults entirely.

In a letter, Miller said he believed the government should only be allowed to make something illegal “for a strong cause or set of facts.” He also compared marijuana laws now to the ban on alcohol in the 1920s.

“When I look back, I think the cannabis ban came from a place of fear, not from medical science or analysis of social harm. Unfortunately, the roots of that came from a history of racism, classism, and big central government with an autocratic desire to control others. It’s anti-American in Its origins are as far as can be imagined.”

Miller noted other states across the country that have legalized medical marijuana, including conservative leaning states such as Oklahoma and Florida. He also noted that eighteen states have legalized marijuana for all adults, including Arizona and Montana.

“Although I’m not sure Texans are willing to go that far, I have seen for myself the value of cannabis as medicine to many Texans,” Miller wrote.

On the other end of the debate, and perhaps the most vocal opponent of decriminalization in Texas, is Governor Dan Patrick.

“The governor who provided clearly made it clear that he is not on board to reduce state drug laws around marijuana,” Joshua Blank of the Texas Policy Project in Utah-Austin said:. “But I think like any other public figure, if pressures continue to mount, especially within his own party, there is no reason why he can’t change his mind.”

Meanwhile, during his re-election campaign, Governor Greg Abbott took a moderate tone when it came to marijuana and indicated he was open to the idea of ​​decriminalizing it.

“Small possession of marijuana is not the kind of violation we want to stock prisons with,” The governor said.

“It is time for all of us, including the governor, members of the Texas legislature and others, to come together and put aside our political differences to have an honest conversation about cannabis: where we have been, where we are going and what role government has to play right,” Miller concluded. his message. “We owe it to our fellow Texans, especially those who are suffering, to drive or get out of the way if we are not able to craft an effective cannabis policy for Texas.”

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