Many government officials are wanting marijuana to be legal on a federal level, including Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN).
In an interview with BET, Omar said that marijuana legalization must happen at the federal level so that individual states aren’t able to continue to disproportionately enforce prohibition against communities of color.
According to Omar, “it’s important for us to [legalize cannabis] federally and not allow for the states to pick and choose, because what happens is you will have a state where someone is publicly and professionally able to profit, and in the next state someone could be sentenced to life for it.”
“We want to make sure that there is equality in our laws,” she added. “I don’t think it’s just for that kind of economy that exists within this policy [of conflicting state marijuana laws].”
“How do you allow the people who have been the most impacted by these harmful policies to now sort of get reparations and be the ones that are set up to benefit from the system now working?” she also said. “I think these are parallel conversations.”
“These are holistic conversations for us to have,” she remarked, citing Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) as examples of lawmakers who are asking for these discussions.