|A Nebraska highway checkpoint.|
If you listened to the law enforcement in Nebraska, you’d think that the world is coming to an end and it’s staring just west in Colorado. They’ve been doing it for months now.
In their latest installment of public whining, cops say that they find pot in one out of every five cars they search coming from Colorado now – all but admitting that all they do these days is profile cars from Colorado specifically to write tickets and make arrests for even the tiniest amount of cannabis they can find.
According to KETV in Nebraska, lawmakers in that state aren’t doing anything about it. Probably because they really can’t, aside from asking the feds to sue Colorado to stop the laws. But really, they lawmakers should be telling their cops to chill out and quit fabricating a problem to inflate their budget. Cops in one county say they’ve arrested more people in four months since sales in Colorado became legal, never mind that marijuana possession and use of an ounce or less has been legal for adults 21 and up for more than a year before that.
“We are paying for them to be housed. We are paying for them to be fed. We are paying for their medical expenses, which a lot of them do have,” whined Duel County Sheriff Adam Hayward. “And then a lot of them, even though they have money to buy drugs, they don’t have money to pay for an attorney. Therefore, the county has to pay for the public defender.”
Or maybe they don’t want to blow their weed money paying for an attorney that might as well be in cahoots with law enforcement to line both of their pockets with the money of cannabis users.
At least one politician says he wants to make marijuana penalties even harsher next session. “It would be a good idea, in my mind, if they would have harsher fines, as far as those people caught with under a pound,” said state Sen. Ken Schilz.
“We’re just going to keep after it and try to get ahead of it,” Hayward said.
And they’ve certainly got the local media on their side as well, as evidenced by KETV reporter Dave Roberts quip at the end of his report:
“While Nebraska lawmakers and law enforcers need to work things out, the clock is ticking. With each moment, Colorado marijuana costs Nebraska taxpayers a little bit more.”
Interestingly, the majority of the people in the comment section on the article feel completely opposite:
“I really don’t want to hear county and state funded entities complaining about not having the funding due to pot arrests that are spillover from the state that legalized it. Give me a break. They make millions, and we are stuck in the stone age here spending millions to stop it. What a joke. Legalize it, make money off it, and give the officers something better to focus on. But we won’t, because we’re Nebraska, one of the highest taxed states, and one of the last to do anything other states have done for years.”
“Not Colorado’s problem that Nebraska wants to spend it’s money foolishly trying to micromanage an easy to grow, easy to obtain agricultural crop that the US Ag Dept says has been America’s number 1 cash crop for the last 20 years.”
And our favorite comment out of the 75 or so in favor of the cops shoving their budget complaints where the sun doesn’t shine:
“Continue to prosecute senseless laws and you get what you deserve. This should have never been illegal. It was never a moral or health issue, it was made illegal to benefit corporations holding competing interests, period. Anyone who does 5 minutes of internet research can fact check that. Putting people in jail or prison for marijuana use or sale is the real crime and attack on our moral fiber. Free your police to solve real crimes and legalize it as well. If you don’t want to legalize it then decriminalize it. I was so happy we washingtonians lived up to our progressive name when we legalized marijuana. I know many professional people including business owners that use it and are successful, far from lazy. Many less in number than I know who use alcohol – meaning there is no explosion of new consumption and total consumption pales to alcohol. People drink themselves silly on a regular basis and we have a panic attack over marijuana. Are you kidding me? Don’t be enslaved by fear or ignorance, do the right thing.”