As a Marylander, if I was a member of the State Assembly, House or Senate, I would’ve voted for the marijuana decriminalization bill because that was the only good option. We could either continue the prohibition of marijuana or decriminalize possession so that people caught with ten grams or less would pay a fine instead of going to jail. This was a good bill because it diminished the so-called War on Drugs, both in Maryland and the United States.
Marijuana decriminalization is a good first step in Maryland and the best the Assembly could do this year. Next year, Maryland will have a new Assembly and governor. They will have the opportunity to see how marijuana decriminalization is working and consider possible next steps.
2014 is a general election year for the Maryland Assembly and governor’s office. I believe that the legal status of marijuana will be an issue in all of these races.