POT TV – President Barack Obama – talking to a LIVE audience on YouTube – said he expects more states to look at legalizing marijuana, and said he thinks the criminal justice system needs reforms when it comes to non-violent drug offenders.
“How do we move forward out of this legal gray area weirdness?” Obama was asked.
“What you’re seeing now is Colorado, Washington – through state referenda – they’re experimenting with legal marijuana,” Obama said.
“The position of my administration has been that we still have federal laws that classify marijuana as an illegal substance, but we’re not going to spend a lot of resources trying to turn back decisions that have been made at the state level on this issue. My suspicion is that you’re gonna see other states start looking at this.
“What I am doing at the federal level, is asking my Department of Justice just to examine generally how we are treating nonviolent drug offenders, because I think you’re right.
“What we have done is instead of focusing on treatment — the same way we focused, say, with tobacco or drunk driving or other problems where we treat it as public health problem — we’ve treated this exclusively as a criminal problem. I think that it’s been counterproductive, and it’s been devastating in a lot of minority communities. It presents the possibility at least of unequal application of the law, and that has to be changed.”