It's time for Cape Cod's Police Chiefs to remember for whom THEY work
Self-interested opposition to popular, long overdue public policy changes
By Allen St. Pierre
My political mentor growing up in Chatham was former U.S. Speaker of the House Tip O'Neil. His bigger-than-life character, shrewd political insight, partisanship-without-being-too-partisan nature is only outlived by his famous, oft-quoted maxim "that all politics are local".
So what would Tip have to say to the parochial refusal by the Cape and Islands' district attorney and nine police chiefs in accepting the clear and strong will of the Commonwealth's voters who, by an eye-popping 65%, voted in November to end the state's defacto decriminalized cannabis laws for adult possession, replacing it with a codified, non-subjective law that brings both clarity and needed revenue into the state?
He'd likely tell these men that they are fools who should listen to the wisdom of their employers--the citizens of Massachussetts--who loudly informed them in no uncertain terms that the status quo regarding cannabis is no longer acceptable.
He'd also likely warn them that their obvious, self-interested opposition to popular (and long overdue) public policy changes will seed even greater public opposition to status quo politics to the tipping point where citizens demand even greater changes in the law, say, to create patient protections for lawful medicinal use, or actually legalizing cannabis sales and use for adults.
Voters say "YES". Police Chiefs say "NO"
The DA and Chiefs need to either get over it post haste or consider resigning
If some Massachusetts district attorneys and police chiefs are so upset that 65% of their fellow citizens are keen on cannabis law reform they need to either get over it post haste or consider resigning, because the Bay State is about to engage in even greater public discussions concerning joining thirteen other states (including New England states Rhode Island, Vermont and Maine) in allowing medical patients lawful access to cannabis, as well as joining California this year in the introduction of an outright legalization bill in Massachusetts (to be introduced soon by State Senator Stanley Rosenberg).
For far too long, politicans, and the citizens who elect them, have provided great deference and undue respect to law enforcement officials' opposition to cannabis law reforms, whose parochial interests have demonstrated that they're way-out-of-step with the taxpayers' sentiments. That time of coddling to the self-interests of law enforcement prohibitionists should have ended effectively last November when the citizens of Massachussetts voted better than two to one to officially decriminalize adult possession of cannabis.
But, disturbingly, continued ‘sour grapes' from some spiteful quarters of law enforcement in Massachusetts will only continue to highlight law enforcements' naked opposition to America's ridiculous, expensive and failed 70-year old war on cannabis consumers.