Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced Tuesday her office would cease prosecuting people for possessing marijuana regardless of quantity or criminal history.
Law enforcement often claims to speak on behalf of the victims of violence. But in order to speak for us, you must listen to us and appreciate what safety means to us.
We are tired of hearing sympathy but watching police harass our sons and daughters for marijuana while our other sons and daughters have been killed and their murders unsolved. This makes us feel no safer and brings us no closer to justice.
Last week, Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby responded to our cry for help (“Baltimore will stop prosecuting marijuana possession, Mosby announces,” Jan. 30). She’s done wasting resources and ready to make justice a reality for us. Arresting and charging people with marijuana offenses that are already legal for millions of Americans doesn’t reduce violence. It doesn’t inspire confidence in our law enforcement among those of us who have suffered the most.
We need a mayor and a police commissioner who are as serious as Ms. Mosby when it comes to using our limited public safety resources to address the violence that plagues Baltimore. We need officials who take brave steps to save other families from feeling our pain. If you want to honor us, then support policies like this one from the state’s attorney. Stop directing your energy toward harassing people under counterproductive marijuana policies.
Instead, use proven violence prevention strategies and solve the horrendous crimes we’ve experienced. This is the only way to prevent other families from walking the road we’ve walked.
Daphne L. Alston, Baltimore
The writer is founder of Mothers of Murdered Sons and Daughters United.