The U.S. should stop arresting responsible marijuana users, Rep. Barney Frank said Wednesday, announcing a proposal to end federal penalties for Americans carrying fewer than 100 grams, almost a quarter-pound, of the substance... "The vast amount of human activity ought to be none of the government's business," Frank said on Capitol Hill. "I don't think it is the government's business to tell you how to spend your leisure time."
As we've mentioned before, American drug laws have been notably unsuccessful. Alcohol, a perfectly legal drug, kills vastly many more people than does marijuana; there is some debate as to whether anyone has ever died by that particular weed. In an age when federal law enforcement permits millions of illegal immigrants to roam free because, they say, there are not enough resources to deport them all, there are certainly better things for them to be doing than busting potheads.
It should come as no surprise that Rep. Frank is the one leading this charge. He has long been a believer in choosing his own road; not only did he have a live-in homosexual lover in his DC home for some years, but that lover operated a prostitution ring from the residence, both homosexuality and prostitution being illegal in the District. Of course, the D.C. police had better things to do than to arrest Mr. Frank and friends. The only eyebrow-raising aspect to this bill is that Frank deigns to extend these immunities to those not of his exalted rank.
The real shocker is Frank's stated reasoning: "The vast amount of human activity ought to be none of the government's business." To our amazement, Scragged find itself standing foursquare with Mr. Frank's principles as expressed.
What he says is transcendently true; the principle is even found in the Constitution. After enumerating the very few rights that the Federal government was given, the Constitution says that all other rights are reserved to the states, or to the people. The Constitution gives the federal government no right to regulate what drugs we take; the Federal Drug Administration operates completely outside the authority given the Federal government by the Constitution.
Unfortunately, the FDA is not the only extra-Constitutional agency; a list of them would go on for pages. What's more, even in areas where the Constitution gives Congress the right to legislate, it often ought not.
That's never stopped them before; and as an examination of Mr. Frank's extremely liberal voting record shows, he himself has not previously felt there was anything too trivial or improper for government meddling. Could he be, um, turning over a new leaf?
They say that partaking of mind-altering substances can lead to enlightenment. As Abraham Lincoln once said of Gen. Grant's whiskey, we need to find out what Barney Frank has been smoking and send a truckload to the rest of our Congresscritters. If they spent more time enjoying the pleasures of a good joint, and less time cramming intrusive and destructive laws down our throats, we'd all be better off.