With the possibility of marijuana legalization looming, many activists are pleased to finally see some progress being made. After many years of petitioning and slow progress, a bill to legalize federally now sits in the Senate awaiting a vote. The problem at hand though, is not all Democrats support marijuana legalization. Given the current Democrat majority in the Senate, and opposition from many Republican senators, it is very unlikely federal legalization will happen anytime soon.
Many activists were happy with the progress being made, but thoroughly disappointed when reading expert analysis on the bill. One large company that is unhappy with the analysis is Ben & Jerry’s. Ben & Jerry’s has long been an advocate for marijuana reform in the US. They have actively promoted the federal legalization of cannabis and have launched many campaigns in the past which support this reform. A few days ago on 4/20, the company launched a campaign in partnership with the ACLU, asking supporters to act and apply pressure to the Senate to pass the bill recently introduced. Supporters of cannabis legalization and supporters of ice cream everywhere were asked to submit a pre-written letter to their senators encouraging them to pass the legislature.
“The Black and Brown community have borne the high cost of cannabis prohibition and the system of mass incarceration that it has fueled, while white men reap the financial benefits of the legalized cannabis industry,” Chris Miller, global head of activism strategy at Ben & Jerry’s, said in a press release. “That’s why the Senate must immediately pass legislation that begins to right the wrongs of the decades long war on drugs by legalizing cannabis and expunging records while restoring equity to the booming legal cannabis industry.”
“For too long, America’s drug laws have been unequally applied at great cost to Black and Brown communities. While no law can undo lifetimes of injustice, our nation must immediately take basic steps that an overwhelming majority of Americans support,” Cynthia Roseberry, deputy director of policy at the ACLU, said, adding that this campaign is about “bringing the voice of Americans to their policymakers in the Capitol.”
These comments come from the campaign the ACLU and Ben & Jerry’s started on Wednesday. The ice cream company also issued this tweet on their page during the eventful day.
It’s hard to get excited about #420 when people of color are still being arrested for cannabis — even in states that have legalized it. We have to do better. Learn more and take action now: https://t.co/dbDtveQgG5 pic.twitter.com/GXV7gWhAg3
— Ben & Jerry’s (@benandjerrys) April 18, 2022
According to a poll from Marijuanamoment, a large majority of Democrats believe that legalizing marijuana should be a top priority for Congress. We will have to wait to see the official vote on legalization within the next few weeks. One thing is for sure though, legalization will come eventually, one way or another.
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