The State of California has successfully passed a bill which prohibits the state’s law enforcement authorities to co-operate with federal law enforcement agencies to implement federal anti-marijuana laws as it conflicts with the state’s laws. This bill was expected as in November of 2016, California had passed a law legalizing marijuana for recreational usage while federal law still has prohibitions of marijuana usage.
And it is finally in place. This law will blatantly defy the federal government and protect medical marijuana and recreational marijuana users.
Brought forward by Assembly member Reggie Jones-Sawyer, this bill would act as a form of protection for the citizens of California consuming and selling marijuana in accordance with the state’s specified limits from getting detained, reported or arrested by federal agents of the government.
The passage of this bill comes at a significant yet uncertain period of time, as the current president, Donald Trump, seeks to implement harsher punishment on those found in possession of marijuana. He also seeks to rein in states’ limit of passing marijuana legalization laws and to superimpose the federal law prohibiting use of cannabis in the territory of the United States.
California legislators have said that up until the legalization of recreational marijuana in the last election, that they considered California to be falling behind in the marijuana industry. We all know California was the first state to legalize medical marijuana in 1996, but many felt that California was lacking behind.
This law proves otherwise and show that California is back ahead in the marijuana legalization game. By stating that the state law enforcement cannot enforce federal laws against marijuana, dispensaries are protected against raids, a huge fear that people have considering that is something that has increased over the past 8 years.
The bill has received applause from proponents of marijuana legalization across the country and has received endorsement from civil rights group across the country. It has also received its fair share of scathing criticism. Some critics even compare it to the so called ‘sanctuary bill’ which is in the Californian Assembly and aims to prohibit state police from cooperating with federal immigration officers on enforcement of immigration laws throughout the state. The Assembly representative from Huntington Beach, Republican Travis Allen, has opposed the bill and has called it anti-American. He has compared it to the immigration bill and has termed the passage of the marijuana bill as complete insanity. But if it protects medical marijuana users, people can call it whatever they want. Medical users are happy and now protected.
The passage of this bill is among a plethora of others approved by the Californian Legislature this week ahead of a deadline on Friday to clear bills from the chamber where they originated. Other bills were also passed, including bills on generation of funds for subsidized housing, speeding up of infrastructure development and construction as well as for changes in the teacher tenure process.