Richard Morton, head of the Arkansas TeaPot Party, is asking state lawmakers to legalize marijuana when the legislature convenes for its 2014 budget session.
Morton, of Shirley, is proposing the Willie Nelson Act, a law that would totally legalize marijuana in all forms. In addition, the law would release anyone from jail who is there on a nonviolent marijuana conviction. Since his law would allow the state to tax the marijuana, he believes it is an appropriate measure for lawmakers to consider during the budget session.
In previous legislative sessions, lawmakers have avoided introducing even limited marijuana measures, so it is unlikely that such a far-reaching measure would have any support among Arkansas lawmakers. And let’s not forget no matter what law a state legislature passes, marijuana is still 100% illegal to grow, sell, or possess under federal law.
More than half a dozen efforts are underway to make marijuana legal in Arkansas. This latest effort shows us where things are headed. Morton and the TeaPot Party are on the fast track. The “medical” marijuana folks are on a slower track, but they all end up at the same place—total legalization of marijuana. The states of Colorado and Washington legalized marijuana for “medical” purposes a few years ago. The drug got so out of control there that they finally threw in the towel and made it totally legal.
While Morton’s “Willie Nelson” law would be the most wide-open marijuana law in the country, at least his intentions are out in the open. Backers of other efforts to legalize marijuana in Arkansas seem to share Morton’s view, but veil their marijuana proposals behind a “medical” smoke screen of helping the sick and dying.