Louisiana lawmakers continue discussion on legalizing recreational marijuana

The Minnesota House is expected to vote this week on a bill legalizing marijuana.
The Minnesota House is expected to vote this week on a bill legalizing marijuana.
Updated: May. 11, 2021 at 9:34 PM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Seventeen states allow recreational marijuana use and several more are considering it, including Louisiana.

Peter Robins-Brown, policy and advocacy director for Louisiana Progress, said he is vouching for Louisiana House Bill 699 right now. The bill would legalize recreational marijuana use for adults over age 21.

“Ending prohibition is inevitable. It’s happening all over the country rapidly. We need to catch up with the rest of the country and get out ahead of this issue.”

The bill is getting backlash from others who believe it will cause more problems for the state.

Last month, the executive director of the Louisiana Sheriffs Association told The Advocate: “In part, it will increase traffic fatalities, teen suicides and lead to new criminal activity.”

Robins-Brown said: “One of the issues with this is that people are already blatantly flouting the laws as they are now, and I think that just kind of blatantly undermines the justice system.”

In the ArkLaTex, all three states allow medicinal use of marijuana with restrictions. Lawmakers have yet to decide on decriminalization.

“If the Legislature isn’t ready to fully end prohibition, then we should stop locking people up for having a couple of joints on them,” Robins-Brown said.

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