Unlimited Access. Try it Today! Your First 10 Days Always $0.99

Readers Respond

News Opinion Readers Respond

Why police oppose legalized pot [Letter]

Speaking as a retired detective, I heartily agree with Dan Rodricks' observation that Maryland police officers want — a little too much — to maintain marijuana prohibition ("The social fears behind the pot wars," Feb. 27). Based on my 17 years of involvement in reform, the last eight on Capitol Hill as a lobbyist and advocate, my profession has three reasons to keep marijuana illegal: money, money and emotion.

Police make lots of money in the easy overtime for the minor bust and drug squads and receive lots of "free" money from the federal and state governments to chase a green plant. Civil asset forfeiture is an important and growing factor in police budgets. Drug cases actually bring money into the department, whereas arresting a pedophile is a drain on the budget.

But here's where emotion comes into play: It will be traumatic for many officers to accept the reality that their colleagues who have been hurt or killed in drug cases suffered for an evil, ineffective and failed social policy. Officers in Colorado and Washington already know this pain.

Howard J. Wooldridge, Adamstown

The writer is co-founder of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.

-
To respond to this letter, send an email to talkback@baltimoresun.com. Please include your name and contact information.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Pot users treated as non-persons
    Pot users treated as non-persons

    Maryland legislators should take in account U.S. Constitution's 14th Amendment in their consideration of what to do with the marijuana laws ("Maryland lawmakers take fresh run at legalizing marijuana," Jan. 31). No state shall deprive a person of their life, liberty and property without due process...

  • Medical marijuana could help decrease overdoses
    Medical marijuana could help decrease overdoses

    In the article "Overdose patients repeatedly end up in hospital" (Dec. 30), The Sun highlighted a number of strategies to deal with epidemic problem of narcotic abuse. Not mentioned, however, is an article from the August 2014 Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Significantly it...

  • D.C. pot law is none of Harris' business
    D.C. pot law is none of Harris' business

    I am sick of Republican politicians who follow their own agenda rather than the will of the people who elected them.

  • End America's failed war on marijuana
    End America's failed war on marijuana

    Regarding Daniel Takash's thoughtful commentary on marijuana laws, marijuana prohibition is indefensible ("Marijuana legalization is the only option," Oct. 27).

  • Maryland should legalize pot [Letter]
    Maryland should legalize pot [Letter]

    I think it should be a person's own choice to do whatever drug a person chooses as long as it doesn't involve committing a crime to acquire the drug. When it comes to marijuana, we should be able to have and smoke as much as we like ("Fixing Md.'s marijuana law," Oct. 3).

  • Blame pot, not almonds, for Calif. water woes
    Blame pot, not almonds, for Calif. water woes

    The Baltimore Sun editorial staff members have a certain left-leaning character that can be relied on at all times, never failing to stake their turf well. The Saturday editorial "Almond killjoy" (April 11) might be considered to be an exception to this rule, in their light-hearted attempt to bemoan...

  • Fixing Md.'s marijuana law [Editorial]
    Fixing Md.'s marijuana law [Editorial]

    Our view: Already critics are poking holes in the state's pot decriminalization law are becoming clear; lawmakers should fix the obvious problems but otherwise wait to see how it works in practice

  • Repeal destructive drug laws [Letter]
    Repeal destructive drug laws [Letter]

    McKenzie Elliott, the 3-year-old shot to death in Baltimore, is a recent victim of misguided drug laws ("Politicians, churchmen talk policing in Northwest Baltimore," Sept. 9). While I do not support open use of "illegal drugs," I do not find that drug sales or use represent a criminal act. Drug...

Comments
Loading

50°