In terms of drug laws, President Obama is widely perceived by the younger generation as the “cool” president, when in reality he is reminiscent of the aggravating RA who writes everyone up for petty dorm infractions but acts like your best friend. President Obama secured the overwhelming majority of the youth vote in 2008. He ran on an anti-war, pro-medicinal marijuana legalization, pro-gay marriage platform that attracted young people from all over the country. His message of hope and change inspired and motivated young people.
Fast forward to today: this president has become the most ardent anti-marijuana president in the history of the country. The Obama administration has persecuted more marijuana users, spent more money on federal anti-drug programs, and conducted more DEA raids than any other administration. Unbelievable to fathom but George Bush had a more pro-marijuana legalization administration than Obama.
President Obama admits to smoking marijuana and doing cocaine while in college in his book. Also, during his senate and original presidential runs, he openly supported medical marijuana for patients and agreed that the federal government should not intervene with states’ rights regarding marijuana issues.
Because he has since turned his back on both these policies, he would normally just be another hypocritical president who fails to run a sensible drug policy. The most infuriating part of President Obama’s drug policies is not that under his administration the DEA has busted down more doors for potential drug arrests than in any other. It also isn’t the fact that he has shut down more marijuana dispensaries in states where voters have voted for lessened marijuana restrictions.
The most infuriating part is that the Obama campaign put out a video last week featuring “Harold and Kumar” star and current Obama administration official Kal Penn, in which both Harold and Kumar can be found watching a movie, laughing, and eating pizza. It is an obvious reference to the pothead classic “Harold and Kumar” movies and a direct attempt to attract the stoner vote. So not only has President Obama changed his position completely on the issue of marijuana, but he is still actively campaigning to be the “cool” president and attract the vote of marijuana users – the same people whom he is ruthlessly persecuting all across the country.
Comedian Penn Jillete recently spoke on this issue during a radio show in which he lambasted the President for a disgusting flip-flop on an issue that could have had severe effects on Obama’s personal life. Jillete says that if Barack Obama had been busted under his own laws, nobody in politics would know his name.
If Obama in college, was prosecuted under the laws he condones, he would have done hard time in jail for his marijuana and coke. And if he did hard jail time, he would not have been accepted into his law school or made millions of dollars off of his book deals, he would not have been able to become a senator, and he surely would have not become the President of the United States. He would have been in prison. If President Obama was imprisoned he would have been another gross statistic of US drug policy today.
The facts are absurd: 1 in 6 people in jail are there for marijuana use or possession. This has horrible societal and economic repercussions. The unbelievable thing about President Obama’s drug policy is that he is actively campaigning for the college kid, pothead, “cool guy” vote. There is nothing “cool” about President Obama’s drug policy. It is a national outrage, something far beyond hypocrisy, and is a classless, spineless use of executive power.