For all of its flaws, the Democratic party does still have a chance to do some good in the remainder of this election as they work to solidify their platform and for a more cohesive party plan.
One of these elements which seem to be falling into places is a common-sense consensus about the legalization of marijuana.
The DNC has decided that their platform on marijuana will include allowing states to decide whether or not to decriminalize or legalize the substance, though the party supports both elements.
“We believe that the states should be laboratories of democracy on the issue of marijuana, and those states that want to decriminalize marijuana should be able to do so. We support policies that will allow more research to be done on marijuana, as well as reforming our laws to allow legal marijuana businesses to exist without uncertainty. And we recognize our current marijuana laws have had an unacceptable disparate impact, with arrest rates for marijuana possession among African-Americans far outstripping arrest rates among whites despite similar usage rates.”
Of course the boogeyman marijuana helter skelter which Debbie Wasserman Schultz subscribes to rears its ugly head in the platform as well, saying that the party plans to invest in and support additional research on the drug. Newsflash, DNC, the research has been done – by insinuating that not enough has been done, you fearmonger the already terrified market.
Finally, the platform emphasizes the criminal justice aspect of marijuana legalization, a victory for the Sanders campaign as prison reform has been a cornerstone of his candidacy. Particularly considering that the Democratic nominee has close ties to the disastrous policies which formed the current, horrific criminal prison system we have today, we can only hope that the DNC truly means to support this measure.
In the coming months, we can expect to see a good deal more of these progressive-ish compromises and shifts. Though we may be suspicious of what the outcomes will be, we can be cautiously optimistic that some meaningful concessions are being made.