Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder recently told the world that he believes that the Federal government should end marijuana’s classification as a Schedule I substance (meaning no medical value and highly addictive) alongside heroin.
When asked during a PBS interview on criminal justice reform if cannabis should be decriminalized, Holder replied,
“I certainly think it ought to be rescheduled. You know, we treat marijuana in the same way that we treat heroin now, and that clearly is not appropriate. So at a minimum, I think Congress needs to do that. Then I think we need to look at what happens in Colorado and what happens in Washington.”
He also said of decriminalization,
“That conversation I think ought to be had with regard to marijuana.”
While those are pretty words that are nice to hear, and certainly garnered the desired attention from the pro-marijuana community, they are inherently dishonest in their intent. What many may not fully understand is that the ability to reschedule any drug rests at the feet of the Attorney General’s office. To hear Mr. Holder state that he is for the reclassification of marijuana now that he is not able to make that change, is mildly frustrating to say the least. Either Eric did not have the gumption to stand up for what he secretly believed while in office, or he was not well enough informed about the plant while in office to make the appropriate decision. Either scenario for a government official would be a wild disappointment, possibly incompetent.
Marijuana Majority chairman Tom Angell raised questions about Holder’s sincerity in comments with The Chicago Sun-Times and said,
“It would have been a lot better if he’d exercised the power to get marijuana rescheduling done while he was still in office. … There’s absolutely no reason marijuana should be in Schedule I, and it would be absurd to keep passing the buck to Congress when federal law clearly gives the administration the power to act.”
All can applaud Holder’s recent statement, (as more need to be made like in while in office) however, he publicly held quite a different position while in office. This excerpt from Fire Dog Lake comments on the clearly different stance taken by his office while Holder was Attorney General:
“During a House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing today Rep. Steve Cohen (D) directly pointed out to Attorney General Eric Holder that the power to reschedule any drug, including marijuana, rests with his office.
When explicitly asked why he hasn’t even at least request the medical evaluation that would begin the rescheduling process Holder responded, “I’m satisfied with what we have done.”
What they “have done” is actively stood in the way of change. Under Holder’s leadership the Department of Justice has not only refused to move forward with a petition from several sitting governors regarding the rescheduling of marijuana but has actually gone to court to fight against efforts to compel them to act.”
It is quickly becoming common knowledge that the current political system is rife with corruption and vast pressures to adhere to insider politics. More often than not the few politicians who still maintain some morally sound ambitions are not able to accomplish those ends due to those pressures. Admirable as Holder’s statements may be in this Left vs. Right paradigm, the action of rescheduling cannabis was well within his scope of power while holding office. Yet, he chose to make his true politics known only after he was no longer able to enact the very change that could well have set this nation on a path of revival; a path of restitution; a reawakening. As grandiose as that presumption of outcome may seem, many hold the belief that cannabis truly has a multitude of possibilities for the human race that have yet been unleashed. This does not take into account the many amazing uses that are known to anyone who is willing to read on the subject, and not blindly listen to those who stand to lose all in the shadow of the miracle plant’s medical, industrial and therapeutic discovery.
This country is in dire need of one not afraid to stand against those actively fighting against the world’s interests for profit alone. One can only hope that Holder’s statements have a revolutionary effect on whosoever should attempt to rise to the occasion.
“The drug war I think is over. Certainly calling it the drug war should be over. But the battle against the narcotics problem in this country has to go on. But we need to take some different approaches, and it should not all be seen as just a criminal justice problem. It ought to be seen as a public health issue,” Holder said.