October 04,2017 Georgia
An ordinance was proposed recently in Atlanta City. To the good fortune of advocates of medical marijuana, it was passed with 15 to 0 votes by the members. The ordinance was to decriminalize cannabis in Atlanta City.
As per the current law, possession of cannabis within the vicinity of Atlanta makes you subject to several fines. For starters, you will be punishable by a maximum of $1,000. Furthermore, you will also face six months of jailtime.
The newly proposed ordinance will reduce down these penalties to a great extent. The imprisoning will be eliminated altogether while the staggering fine will drop down to $75 at maximum. The mayor of Atlanta—Kasim Reed—wrote on social media that he supports the initiative. The bill now rests with him for eight days in which he has the option to stop it from becoming a law. If he does not respond during this time, it will automatically become law. The mayor tweeted that he looks forward to signing the bill.
The man behind the proposal is Kwanza Hall, the Councilman of Atlanta City. He is also the person who will be running for the position of a Mayor. In a press release after the voting, he said,
“Today we stand with every parent of Atlanta who is fearful of or has seen their children’s lives destroyed, or careers ruined because of a racist policy that unjustly incarcerated minorities by more than 90 percent,”
Racial disparities are a major problem in Atlanta, and Hall is right to be worried about it. In his district, there are nearly 92% people that have been a victim of the wrong criminal justice system. It only makes the weed arrests if there are African American people involved. What’s funny is that there are only 17% of the total black constituents.
In another interview, Hall went on to say,
“Currently, we are seeing families torn apart. We’re seeing young people lose their scholarships, we’re seeing people become unemployable, all because of possession of less than an ounce.”
And primarily the neighborhoods, the zip codes, the people are people of color living in parts of the city that have been left behind, that have been neglected, and they are being penalized greater than anyone else.
He also added that it has primarily been the neighborhoods that have gotten affected. The zip codes, and people living in areas have been left, neglected altogether. On the other hand, the police officers are tackling these matters as if they are lethal, where they could instead spend their time on some more valuable effort—an effort that actually makes the citizens safe.
The President of City Council—Caesar Mitchell—also went on to show his support saying that the poor and the blacks are the main victims of our criminal justice system. According to him, decriminalization is the solution to this problem.
If the passed bill becomes a law, it will be a major achievement for the cannabis industry in Atlanta. As for now, the focus now will shift to bring the law to people’s knowledge, letting them know it will work.
Marijuana stays in the news, and Alice is always ready to keep us updated. A world traveler and lover of freedom, Alice knows what is going on, no matter where she roams. She specializes in marijuana legalization stories across the globe, with up to date... [read more]