President Obama To Answer Online Questions Thursday: Will Marijuana Legalization Be A Top Question Again?

This Thursday, President Obama will field questions submitted from the world of social media during a live-streamed YouTube interview. NORML supporters can send their questions to the President at youtube.com/askobama, or via Twitter, by using the #askobama hashtag.

Obama will answer the top-rated questions when the interview kicks off at 2:30 p.m. EST on Thursday.
Update: Many marijuana questions are appearing in the Other category.

In two prior online question-n-answer sessions with the American public since taking office over two years ago, the question of ending America’s failed Cannabis Prohibition was a top question both times–which speaks to the importance and urgency of the public’s want to actually control cannabis via taxation and regulation. However, regrettably, President Obama has dismissed ending Cannabis Prohibition in no uncertain terms.
If you’re interested in asking President Obama about reforming America’s 74-year-old Cannabis Prohibition laws, you’ll have to send in your question by midnight, Tuesday, January 25th.
Be concise! White House staff says each question “should be about 20 seconds long.”
Suggested short questions for President Obama:

  • Wouldn’t finally legalizing marijuana in America end the terrible Prohibition-related violence in Mexico. If not, why not?
  • You claim you want to be the first ‘green jobs’ president. In a green economy, why does your administration continue to oppose American farmers growing industrial hemp. Governments in Canada, France and China allow their farmers to prosper from industrial hemp cultivation, why not American farmers?
  • Though you say you support medical access to cannabis, why does your drug czar (Gil Kerlikowski) and DEA chief (Michele Leonhart) continue to publicly lie claiming that cannabis has no medical use or value?
  • If Jamaica (or Mexico), for example, wanted to legalize and tax cannabis, would your administration oppose their efforts to end Cannabis Prohibition in their country?
  • As a person struggling with tobacco addiction, do you think the criminal justice system works better than health services to ween drug abusers from self-destructive behavior? Is the decision to stop using a drug, like tobacco, or marijuana, a personal or governmental decision?

You can check out a great question to President Obama from our friends at LEAP here.
[Russ adds: You can see the video questions I submitted to President Obama via The Stash Blog at http://stash.norml.org/youtube-ask-obama-forum-dominated-by-marijuana-legalization-questions]

112 thoughts

  1. @32 – It looks to me like a very large number of marijuana related posts have been deleted. I wonder if the person(s) deciding whether a question is appropriate or not is a prohibitionist.

  2. for the life of me i can not figure why this is still an issue. the revenue being lost and the dollars being spent on prosecution are ridiculous. do i expect any change? well maybe we wont get laughed at this time, but that is it. or will we be in for a suprise…lol

  3. Both parties are a joke. None of them listen to a word the people have said. We have a wayward government it is not for the people, it dosen’t care about the people.

  4. i posted it like this……
    Wouldn’t finally legalizing marijuana in America end the terrible Prohibition-related violence in Mexico. If not, why not? You said you wanted to decriminalize marijuana before your presidency, WHAT HAPPENED TO THAT LIE?
    Also…..
    Go to http://www.topix.com/issue/marijuana and vote in your city on the “Should marijuana be legalized” poll! Spread the word!

  5. Mr obama… the people who want it legal are going to smoke it no matter what stupid laws you make so just make it easy on yourself… legalize it and end all the useless bullshit surrounding marijuana prohibition

  6. Mr Obama… are you and your people actually taking this seriously or are you just trying to give pot smokers a sense of false hope?

  7. Yeah, they’ll make sure these questions are flagged and moved down in the polls so Obama doesn’t have to see them. I can just imagine all those paid WH workers on the internet flagging any question concerning cannabis! Screw him and his liberal wooden horse he rode in on! Legalization won’t start at the Federal level anyway. It’d just be nice to see Obama have to read those questions afterwards and give it some rational thought (if that’s even possible any longer).
    If it doesn’t help profit margins for corporations then it isn’t important. After all those are his main “contributors” now, not the lowly single family dweller.

  8. RATIONALE.
    God has given us the privilege and responsibility of “free choice – the gift of God’s love” We have the capacity and obligation to make the kind of choices that shape the world we are part of. It’s our “free choices” that make the world the way it is. But, “The more freedom is threatened, the narrower our margin of choice becomes.”
    GENESISTS ARE UNDER OBLIGATION TO GOD WITH LIBERTY OF CONSCIENCE.
    The root of that obligation is the way we treat our fellow human beings with the inherent goodness of humanity and truth. “Truth” is lodged in the intrinsic foundation and depths of our souls. Genesists hold to the absolute natures of truth and justice. We are free to control our own humanity and truth, and any attempt to insult or discredit that inherent goodness and truth is reprehensible. Evil will always prevail [when] good people do nothing. “The Truth” – if – not abandoned, will triumph over “The Big Lie.” The truth has no agenda – the truth is simply the truth. “The truth will set us free.”
    GENESISTS BELIEVE IN THE RULE OF CIVILITY AND CONSTANTLY PROMOTE AND ADVANCE RESPECT FOR OUR FELLOW MAN.
    Therefore, Genesists [lawfully assemble] in our Faith, holding our Constitution as absolute. Our grievance as a “worldwide faith based community” is that government’s intransigent prohibition [taken to epic proportion without the slightest mitigation or capitulation] of our unalienable religious right, observance, rite, activity, or “free exercise thereof” is absolutely unacceptable as a rule of law, and is a violation of the goodness of creation. It is an individuals unalienable religious right, endowed by our Creator, to severally or collectively pursue happiness through free exercise of religious expression. Persistent attacks on our Constitutional rights, enforcement emphasis and police state tactics, best described as belligerent and arrogant action, based on Abusive Process and Malicious Prosecution, violates our First Amendment freedoms. Therefore, Genesists invoke a “Conscience Clause,” assert a “Severability Clause,” and promote “Nullification” of any law that prohibits our Holy Sacrament.
    GOD HAS GIFTED HUMANITY WITH INTELLECTUAL AND MORAL FREEDOM.
    The Genesist Faith recognizes two types of laws; just laws – and – unjust laws. Genesists have a legal and moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely – Genesists have a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. An unjust law, is no law at all. An unjust law, is a human law that is [not] rooted in eternal law, and natural law. Prohibition goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to control a man’s appetite by legislation and makes a crime out of things that are not crimes. A prohibition law strikes a blow at the very principles upon which our government was founded. Our consolation is that prohibitionists of our sacrament will [if not already], by their own hand, lose humanities favor, and wear their transgressions on the bosom of their souls.
    THEREFORE, THE GENESIST FAITH DECLARES:
    To be ruled a certain way – to oppress our souls [which is to oppress God’s Spirit within], because it is – an unjust law of government [of man] – is forbidden by the Genesist Faith. “God forbids it!”
    “He who resorts to civil disobedience obeys the laws of the state to which he or she belongs, not out of fear of sanctions, but because he or she considers them to be good for the welfare of society. But there comes occasions, generally rare, when he or she considers certain laws to be so unjust, as to render obedience to them, a dishonor. He or she then openly and civilly breaks them and quietly suffers the penalty for their breach.” Gandhi

  9. DHARNA
    The practice of exacting justice by sitting at the doorstep of an offender until the demand is granted.
    Genesis the Faith Ventura, Ca. Colony

  10. If he gets elected in 2012 (and no longer has to worry about being elected again) we may get to hear his true opinion. Right now it is say whatever is best to get elected again…. In other words don’t touch this with a 10 foot pole

  11. What the hell happened to the 20 continuous pages asking about Marijuana? They simply dissapered. Seems the president is opting not to answer the MOST POPULAR question!

  12. dont kid yourself guys. states rights is the only way this is going to be legalized. also give it a 20 years + [how christian your state is] = when it will be legalized.
    the feds will just fuck it up.

  13. Research shows that cannabis may reverse Alzheimer’s. My dad is wasting away in a veteran’s hospital. He doesn’t recognize anyone in his family. If cannabis can bring him back to us, why am I denied trying? He wouldn’t have to remeber everything he did the day before, just knowing where home is would be fantastic.

  14. Here’s the question I would like to ask:
    “With the increasingly high number of pharmaceutical recalls and the announcement of the new billion-dollar federal government drug development center, will any further consideration be given to allowing the naturally occurring, non-toxic compounds in cannabis sativa to be used as a valid federally-acknowledged medicine?”

  15. Here is where our current policy on Marijuana was born in the ’30’s:
    “There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the US, and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz and swing, result from marijuana usage. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers and any others.”
    —-Harry Anslinger of The Federal Bureau of Narcotics
    Can we at least admit that a change is needed on the horizon?

  16. My Question is this:
    High schoolers have consistently stated that marijuana is easier to get than alcohol and tobacco, yet your administration continues to argue that the war on drugs keeps drugs away from kids. Why don’t we regulate cannabis like we do alcohol?

  17. Don’t hold your breath. When we did this last time he insinuateed we were all potheads who had nothing to do but send in emails all day….Remember? It was THE number one askwed question…he dismissed it. Pot is THE political third rail..don’t hold your breath….unless you just took a hit. Save your seeds, hide your weed

  18. http://i.imgur.com/9aDiO.jpg
    Screen cap of top 50 most popular questions. All categories/most popular.
    EVERY SINGLE ONE IS CANNABIS OR WAR ON DRUG RELATED.
    It is now at like the first 3 pages of most popular.
    Maybe the 3rd time is a charm and the prez will actually address the issue like an adult. I ain’t betting on it, but it would be nice.

  19. My friend, why don’t we, as Americans, have the right to choose this God blessed medicine? Please, I will not vote for you again unless you make the decision to publically endorse it. I also pray that you personally switch from tobacco to this healthier alternative for the sake of your future and loved ones.

  20. Looks like google is deleting any question about marijuana. Gotta love this country’s so-called “free speech”.

  21. Obama will never decriminalize marijuana, or even discuss it.
    The jobs and money that the war on drugs generates is much easier to fabricate, due to the system that already exists.
    We have nearly 30 million laws in this country and law makers making new ones every day.
    With every law written we loose a right or part of a right.
    Like all Presidents since just before the 1900’s have answered to an elite group of families the most prominent, being the Rockafellers. Do a web search and find out for yourselves.
    There was a man named Fiderich Nietzsche that set. The framework for our present form of government.
    He divided the human race into what he called Masters and slaves.
    Nietzsche promoted a society where a few elite aristocrats would
    Govern in the shadows of a false front government where the slaves “us” would be reduced to a machine existence.
    The banking industry is the one that benefits from the war on drugs.
    The Rockafellers net worth exceeds 11-trillion US dollars. They own the largest bank in America ” J.P. Morgan Chase along with other large financial institutions.
    The Rockafellers also own Exxon-Mobile petroleum.
    They also own Barack Obama.

  22. I have a question. Why is the Government making Marijuana illegal in the first place? We the People should make our own decisions on what we put into our bodies….thats true freedom, isn’t it? I’ll tell you why…. By making something illegal the government can control people, by threating people with incaceration. and excess fees. which is amendment 8 in the Constitution. No excessive fees nor cruel and unsual punishment. people are getting several years and fined several thousand dollars. to me thats not respecting the Constitution of the United States of America.

  23. To see my question, search the youtube.com/askobama site for the term ‘varietal’. Even if he doesn’t call for it, we will still demand it.

  24. It looks like the top comments are still Marijuana related galore. I hate this war mongering, neocon, Bush-lite president, but I’ll give him a chance here. He is insane to alienate his base. Let’s see what he learned recently.

  25. I sent in questions as well. Mine were Alcohol VS Marijuana and common sense. Marijuana clearly shown to wins every subject matter. Keep up the good work RUSS!!! Peace NORML PEEPS!!

  26. “The Reformation”
    Genesis I:29,30,31
    Of course 59 12:07pm is the Genesist Faith’s post. Don’t know how that happened – but – it did. Duh!

  27. i found this and id like to share it it was rather interesting to me
    In an October 15, 2010 article, former Surgeon General of the United States, Joycelyn Elders voiced her support for legalization of marijuana:
    “I think we consume far more dangerous drugs that are legal: cigarette smoking, nicotine and alcohol,” said Joycelyn Elders, the former surgeon general and a supporter of the measure. “I feel they cause much more devastating effects physically. We need to lift the prohibition on marijuana.”

  28. From what i seen last night on the speech he dodged the question, although he said he would cut spending on whatever it was,he would cut. So Mr.Obama ya think the war on drugs might be in that catagory?

  29. #74 its illegal because it would hurt major pharmisudical companies they even admited to it at least i think thy did i read it somewhere but i cant remember where

  30. check popularity and you will not find one question about cannabis, i think they have a blocker on it to not have any on the top so obama doesnt neglect us again because they rigged the system to not value our questions. no matter what you do they will rig it to be their way. Maybe one day obama will be a man and actual do what he says he is going to do and actually answer the questions the people want to hear not what your websites allows you to read. Truth Will Prevail with or without you!

  31. This submission has been deleted.
    This submission has been removed because people believe it is inappropriate.
    the marijuana questions are just being flagged and removed..
    Good Luck Anyways!!
    ~IRISHMc

  32. Yes, absolutely they deleted submissions!
    That’s one way of making sure marijuana never becomes one of the top questions he answers. Everyone knows what kind of tactic that is on freedom of speech.

  33. It sounds like you have the virus, you believe the msmedia, the hounds are howling, it is time to prepare.
    Who voted for bigger prisons, who voted for bigger government, who voted for this police state, Ms Clinton, Joe Lieberman, Joseph Biden, and Obama.

  34. Carter stated in the ’70’s that pot should be lagalized. Clinton and his Surgeon General felt the war on drugs was a failure and that legalization of cannabis was worth looking at. We know that Kennedy very well may have used it for his bad back. It is conjectured that Lincoln used it for his deppression. Both George Washington and Jefferson were hemp advocates and grew, yes this is true, we all know it now. And we know that you, Mr. President, used at one time. What is your honest opinion, sir, on the issue of productive members of society who are arrested for personal possession and use of cannabis?

  35. President Obama on Thursday called drug legalization “an entirely legitimate topic for debate,” but quickly added “I am not in favor of legalization.” my response is simply, Put Up or Shut Up Mr. President! The debate you claim is “an entirely legitimate topic for debate,” is long over due. We the People have been a……sking this Government to give us this debate and debate this issue like reasonable human beings. The government’s response has “shocked the sense of fair play,” they have openly lied and mis-informed the general public for since 1937. Mr. President we want this debate! We dare you to set this in motion and since you clearly stated, “not in favor of legalization”, you and your party should put up or shut up and defend Prohibition. We the People will bring it on, set the ground, we’ll debate who ever you send. All we ask is that it be live and transparent to the public.

  36. As a concerned citizen, I think the government must improve its efficiency. Britain has been wise and cut down their government, and it is time our government does the same. I love this country. But our government has become so large that it can not even sustain or manage itself. It is time to cut the fat. I think it is good for government to supervise the workings of our economy, to regulate interstate commerce, and our defense with wisdom and fair judgment, but our federal government is putting a huge financial burden on America’s small businesses .
    Look at all the businesses that have died in the last two to three years, and all the rest who are hanging on only because they were willing to cut down staff, take cuts in salaries, and cut overhead. How can congress, who is supposed to be a servant of the people, give themselves a cost of living increase when the rest of Americans are suffering? It is time for government to take some of the financial burden by cutting staffing and unnecessary programs.
    The solution to our deficit problem according to Ralph Nader is, “The first thing you do is you get rid of corporate welfare. That’s hundreds of billions of dollars a year. The second is you tax corporations so that they don’t get away with no taxation. The Citizens for Tax Justice put out a report recently. They had 12 major corporations, like Honeywell, Verizon, General Electric, and in three years, they made $167 billion in profit, paid zero tax, and got $2.5 billion back from the Treasury.” Who paid them this $2.5 billion; we did.
    Large corporations and companies that use our roads, are protected by our military and have access to our markets should pay their fair share of U.S. taxes. These companies, known as inverted corporations, grow their business in the United States and establish a nominal presence in a foreign country for tax purposes. Right now remaining loopholes within our laws permit profitable companies to legally skip out on their taxes and shift their tax burden to America’s taxpayers and responsible businesses already facing tough times in this economy.
    Scott Klinger, tax policy director of Business for Shared Prosperity stated, “It’s obscene to put everything from the Small Business Administration to Medicare and Social Security on the chopping block while corporate tax dodging deprives us of major revenue. Today, large corporations as a group contribute just nine percent toward federal government bills – down from 32 percent in 1952,” . . . “It’s time to plug the trillion dollar hole in the U.S. Treasury from tax haven abuse.” Social Security is not an entitlement, as some have stated, but money owed by our government, which we the people entrusted to them for our retirement. If Americans are to trust their government, then the U.S. must pay everything it citizens have put into the system. Our trust must be restored.
    Small businesses and the middle class are the lifeblood of local economies. We pay our fair share of taxes and generate most of the new jobs. However, the big companies who move their capital offshore to hide it from taxation in the U.S. still demand subsidies and benefits from taxpayer-funded programs. Who pays for all of this—the American workers. Government cannot give to anyone what it has not taken from someone else.
    “WASHINGTON Today” back in 2007, cited $100 billion in revenue drained from the U.S. Treasury at the expense of honest, hardworking American families who pay their fair share, Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., and (then) Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., introduced comprehensive legislation to stop offshore tax haven and tax shelter abuses.
    I believe America will suffer for all its legalistically selfish approach of self gratification and materialism. But if we can earnestly seek to care for one another and take a stand for moral growth, then we can leave this life a better human being and leave behind a better and stronger America.
    Your office is my last defense to keep America noble, free and strong, and it is my hope you will make every effort to get us ‘out of the ditch’. I would like you to take a long look at the revised Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act, just introduced by Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and Kent Conrad, D-N.D. This bill is designed to stop the use of tax havens and encourage large U.S. corporations to move back home.
    Thank you for your time,
    K.B.Cooper, D-CA

Leave a Reply