A state lawmaker from East Texas says God didn't create marijuana by mistake and is pushing to remove all offenses related to the plant from Texas statutes.
Texas State Rep. David Simpson (R-Longview) filed a bill Monday that would repeal the state's ban on growing, possessing and selling marijuana.
"I don't believe that when God made marijuana he made a mistake that government needs to fix," Simpson wrote in an editorial on Trib Talk. "Civil government should value everything God made and leave people alone unless they meddle with their neighbor."
Under Simpson's bill, the government would not regulate the drug and all penalties currently in place would be removed beginning Sept. 1.
In addition to religion, Simpson said the "well-intended" war on drugs has only created a culture of "no-knock warrants," "stop-and-frisk" and "billionaire drug lords" and that existing drug laws are as big a failure as prohibition.
"You would think that our country's history with alcohol prohibition — an era marked by bootlegging, organized crime, government corruption and a rise in crime in general — would have prevented us from making the same mistake again," Simpson wrote. "The time has come for a thoughtful discussion on the prudence of the prohibition approach to drug abuse."
Four states have legalized marijuana for recreational use, Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington; 23 states and the District of Columbia have laws legalizing marijuana in some form, medical or otherwise.
Full House Bill No. 2165: