While the Democratic Party in general has embraced the advancement of cannabis legalization and bringing equity into what has historically been an unbalanced system of injustice regarding cannabis convictions for even the most minor of marijuana related offenses, Joe Biden has been a little slow to come online with that way of thinking.
Of course, wanting to win when he ran for president in 2020, Joe Biden pledged to decriminalize cannabis use and expunge all prior cannabis use convictions while leaving whether or not to legalize the sale of the plant to each individual state.
Since winning the election nothing has happened, until now …
Thursday, October 6 President Joe Biden announced that he is pardoning all Americans who have been convicted of simple marijuana possession under federal law and that he urges governors across the country to do the same for state convictions.
He’s also asked the Attorney General and Health & Human Services Secretary to review marijuana’s classification as a schedule 1 drug.
This sounds great, doesn’t it? It should feel like a victory, shouldn’t it? So why doesn’t it?
Probably because, after two years of inaction on these campaign promises, the action that we do get may meet his words but fall short of society’s needs as those people whose possession charges were unjustly elevated in a biased system heavily skewed against minorities are left out.
Or maybe it’s because it was just last year that staffers in Joe Biden’s White House were suspended, reassigned, or asked to resign for revealing past cannabis use.
For me I think it’s because the announcement came 32 days before this year’s midterm election where Democrats need to hold onto and pick up as many seats as they can to maintain their majority. I think it feels like pandering and propping, a last-minute attempt to sway voters with some shiny beads and shallow flattery.
That’s not to say do or don’t vote Democrat or Republican, just make your choices with open eyes. Certainly, be grateful when they make good choices but don’t necessarily buy everything they’re selling at sticker price.