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Governor Supports Relaxing PA’s Marijuana Laws

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Cannabis Plant

Cannabis Plant

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Cannabis Plant

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The Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee recently voted in favor of a bill that would, if cleared by the Pennsylvania State House and Senate, lower the legal penalties for those charged with the possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana from that of a third-degree misdemeanor to a summary offense allowing up to a $300 fine and no jail time.

This hurdle marks another step in the decriminalization of cannabis in the Keystone State.

Governor Tom Wolf has already made his support for marijuana decriminalization public.  His final signature on this bill could pave the way for more action from our state legislature to end the modern-day prohibition of cannabis in Pennsylvania.

I support decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana”

— Gov. Tom Wolf

Wolf voiced his opinion on this topic last spring with a tweet stating, “I support decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana. [We] shouldn’t focus on incarcerating people for possession of small amounts of marijuana.”

This statement should serve as a staple for the legality of marijuana in Pennsylvania, and while just earlier this year, Wolf made a point during a radio interview that while not contradictory of his previous beliefs, does pose more questions in regard to the future for fully legal cannabis under a Wolf administration.

Wolf stated that while he does believe in the legality of medical marijuana, he doesn’t believe that the citizens of Pennsylvania are ready for recreational use of the substance. Wolf said he believes that we should further review the effects and consequences of other states progress in recreational marijuana and use their examples to gauge the possibilities of recreational use in Pennsylvania.

In 2014, the city of Philadelphia officially decriminalized marijuana possession and the city’s arrests for marijuana possession declined 75 percent according to Philadelphia police. Philadelphia’s mayor has previously voiced his progressive belief in the recreational use of marijuana.

Pittsburgh, the next Pennsylvania city to decriminalize cannabis, did so in 2015, and now the entire state may adopt the same legal measures.

With more and more states taking action on ending the prohibition of cannabis, Pennsylvania may be one of the next to influence the nation’s future for legalizing marijuana.

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About the Writer
Noah Taylor, Staff Writer

My name is Noah Taylor and I’m a senior at Tyrone High School. I’m a huge fan of hockey and have played the sport for about six years. I’m an avid...

6 Comments

6 Responses to “Governor Supports Relaxing PA’s Marijuana Laws”

  1. kobi on October 12th, 2018 2:40 pm

    This is a good thing our police should worry about more important things then someone whos minding there own buisness and doing what they want

  2. Mary Ann Appello on October 13th, 2018 7:20 pm

    I support the legalization of marijuana.

  3. Benedict L. DelBaggio IV on October 15th, 2018 9:47 am

    I personally believe that legalization of marijuana is a bad decision, as it will lead to an increase in distracted driving (Marijuana has a worse effect on driving than alcohol) and could lead to stunted brain development for minors. I feel that overall we should try to ban all smoking products including “Vapes” (E-cigarettes), cigarettes, and of course, marijuana.

  4. Devon Henninger on October 16th, 2018 8:35 am

    Banning all forms of smoking is an authoritarian idea that I am heavily opposed to. People should have the liberty and freedoms to live their lives how they please. If that means smoking, then it does. There is no reason to ban e-cigs, tobacco cigarettes, or Marijuana (if legalized). As for distracted driving, I am doubtful it would increase. You would still be driving under the influence, however it would be Marijuana rather than alcohol. So, it would carry the same penalty as a DUI relating to alcohol. Also, the brain development stunt wouldn’t be particularly on the legalization. If legalized it will be banned to use or possess, for anyone under 18 or 21. Depending on how they make the law.

  5. Benedict L. DelBaggio IV on October 17th, 2018 12:45 pm

    There are various reasons to ban E-cigs and tobacco cigarettes due to the health problems they cause. DUI will increase due to marijuana’s addictive qualities and how it makes people lose focus, which is detrimental when driving. Regarding the idea of it being authoritarian, that argument of it restricting liberties can be applied to almost every single regulation and law in our legal system, and a ban on smoking products is for the greater good of our society.

  6. Tyrone on October 17th, 2018 9:05 pm

    Smoking is nasty and should be band and marijuana is not good for your brain. Smoking can not only harm the smoker but the people around them. When I go to the store and someone is smoking outside of it I find that disgusting your disrespecting others. Second-hand smoke can also cause diseases such as cancer. Marijuana will also cause more automobile accidents and drug use amongst young adults another thing is that drug-related crimes will worsen. ALL SMOKING WETHER TABACCO E-CIG JUUL VAPE WEED IS ALL BAD!!! Don’t ruin your body…

We have been getting a lot more comments recently (which is good!). Unfortunately, some of them have been kind of nasty (which is bad!). Not surprisingly, most of the nasty comments have been submitted anonymously. Therefore, if you would like us to even consider publishing your comment you must use your REAL NAME and a VALID email address. If you are a TASD student please use your school email address. Thank you and please comment responsibly!

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Governor Supports Relaxing PA’s Marijuana Laws