Sarah Palin: an unlikely ally?
Posted on November 23 2015
Don’t get me wrong, I think Sarah Palin’s views on many things are pretty abhorrent. I found the prospect (however slim) of her rising to one of the most powerful positions in America genuinely terrifying. Still, I think it’s important to judge each person’s stance on each separate issue as free from their wider political ideology (at least when looking at the issue in hand). From that objective position, Sarah Palin is, at least on the issue of marijuana, something of an ally of all those who favour legalisation.
When asked about Alaska’s decision to legalise marijuana, following a vote last February, Palin said one of the most sensible things I’ve ever heard her say, claiming it “was no big deal.”
'I grew up in Alaska when pot was legal anyway. It was absolutely no big deal.'
'I mean, you didn't smoke it because your parents would strangle you. And if you were a jock and you were a Christian going to youth group, you just didn't do it right?'
'But when it comes to picking our battles, for many of us in Alaska, legalization of marijuana just was never really a bright blip on the radar screen.’
So, she’s hardly a champion of the cause, but there was a refreshing sense of perspective in her response when quizzed further, saying that on a national scale, there were more important things to be 'fighting over and battling over.’ This is not to say the issue is trivial, and as someone in the pro-marijuana camp I would of course refute any assertion that is was, but it’s about a prioritisation of how to to best use limited resources. In the UK, there has been a slight change in attitude with several highly-ranked Police Officers saying they would turn a blind eye to small use of cannabis, especially for medicinal purposes.
I suppose Palin concisely explains this idea best herself: 'If somebody's gonna smoke a joint in their house and not do anybody any harm, then perhaps there are other things our cops should be looking at to engage in and try to clean up some of the other problems we have in society.'
Whilst I disagree with many things she says, I certainly cannot argue with that.