Published on July 13th, 2015 | by News Feed
El Paso Seeks Marijuana Law Reform
Americans are no longer evenly split when it comes to the topic of marijuana legalization. According to the most recent polls a majority of Americans are now in favor of legalizing the naturally occurring plant. El Paso is a Texas border town that is also interested in legalizing the plant and their desire stems from the current issues that are spilling over from Ciudad Juarez.
Ciudad Juarez has been called the murder capitol of the world. This is one of the home towns of a major drug cartel in Mexico. Because of the violence that exists in this town the citizens of El Paso are petitioning the government to rethink and rewrite the current laws that restrict the use of marijuana. According to the residents, legalization of the plant would not only reduce the violence in their town as well as in Mexico, but it would also serve to stop the flow of cash to these illegal cartels.
“They believe the decades-long U.S. ‘War on Drugs’ has militarized the border and put ordinary people under constant surveillance, disrupting lives and fracturing communities without achieving results that justify the emotional, cultural and economic costs,” the Guardian reported.
When you consider that 44,000 pounds of marijuana was seized by the Border Patrol last year alone, you quickly realize how large the problem is in a place like El Paso. Because the cartel industry in Mexico relies so heavily on the cash from the sale of marijuana, many residents in this border town believe that legalization is the only way to stop the flow of money.
“The cartels are bigger and stronger than they’ve ever been and what have we really done that’s thwarted their efforts? Nothing,” Justin Underwood, an El Paso attorney, told the Guardian. “I am of the opinion that human beings are going to do drugs, period. Human beings are going to drink alcohol. I accept these things as facts and as long as you have a demand you will always have a supply, no matter what.”
“I don’t know that it would reduce crime in El Paso, which is already the safest city in America—but it would help to reduce cartel crime in Mexico,” U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke, explained. “Today, Mexican cartels enjoy billions of dollars in profits from U.S. drug sales, profits that go to hire young men and women, to buy politicians, police and judges, and allow some to commit crime with impunity.”
Because Texas is such a conservative state many will argue that there is no way that the legislation will ever come to fruition. Over the past year alone 11 bills have been written regarding the legalization of marijuana. Only one of those bills has passed and it was nearly useless and only related to the use of cannabis oil.