Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.
NewsOpinionReaders Respond

Marijuana laws are not constitutional

American Civil Liberties Union

Marijuana remains illegal because the ACLU and NORML do not acknowledge that being arrested is deprivation of liberty and seizing marijuana is deprivation of property ("Md. marijuana arrest rate soars," June 6).

Liberty and property are fundamental rights. Due process of law requires the deprivation of fundamental rights be justified by a compelling state interest to show the marijuana laws are reasonable and necessary.

The constitutionality of the marijuana laws has been determined by rational basis test not by the compelling state interest test.

Criminal laws require strict scrutiny by the court, but injury to fundamental rights and presents an Article III justiciable controversy.

Any marijuana defendant can claim they were deprived of liberty and property without due process of law because there was no threat to the rights of others or to public safety.

Michael J. Dee, Windham, Maine

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
American Civil Liberties Union
  • 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....

  • 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