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November 21, 2016

"Four Ways Drug Policy Reformers Must Play It Smart Under the Trump Administration"

The title of this post is the headline of this notable new commentary by Bill Piper, which gets started this way:

I began working, advocating and lobbying for federal-level drug policy reform in Washington, DC in the last year of Bill Clinton’s presidency. I’ve continued to do so ever since: I was a loyal soldier in the war against the War on Drugs through eight years of George W. Bush and then eight years of Barack Obama. But now, with the election of Donald Trump, it feels like the work during those three presidencies was just basic training—the real challenge is just beginning.

Like many people, I’m still trying to wrap my mind around the very idea of Donald Trump as president. But what’s certain is that drug policy reformers are going to have to play it smart in the new era, and I do have some initial thoughts.

First, we’re in uncharted territory. We have never had a president like this—so far removed from establishment norms, openly promoting white supremacy, believing in and promoting wacko conspiracy theories. Complicating matters, he doesn’t seem to have fixed positions, rarely gives specifics and contradicts himself often. No one knows for sure what exactly to expect, but we should assume the worst.

His administration, which looks set to be staffed by drug-war extremists, could go after state marijuana laws. Instead of just opposing sentencing reform, they could push for new mandatory minimums. They might demonize drugs and drug sellers to build support for mass deportations and a wall. Trump’s law-and-order rhetoric could fundamentally alter the political environment, nationally and locally.

Right now there is a bipartisan consensus in favor of reducing incarceration—that consensus is in danger. We could be set back decades if we’re not careful. We need to rethink a lot of what we’ve been planning and think about how we message. And it’s more important than ever that we support our allies in other movements and stand strong for racial justice. We need to re-learn how to play defense.

November 21, 2016 at 05:52 PM | Permalink

Comments

Poor little druggies lying in the snow
Trump got elected NO NO NO
First came Sessions then came Flynn
now they better learn to duck and spin...

"And it’s more important than ever that we support our allies in other movements and stand strong for racial justice."

Well that is odd. The first state to legalize mary jane also just voted to keep SLAVERY as a constitutionally permissible punishment. I didn't expect to see much main stream press on it but I would have expected a blog on sentencing to note it. Seems like the druggies just want to get high, don't care so much about racial Justice.

Posted by: Bob Marley | Nov 21, 2016 8:25:09 PM

Moonbattery.

Posted by: federalist | Nov 21, 2016 9:41:26 PM

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