NORML’s Keith Stroup and Erik Altieri on The Bob Edwards Show

Last week, NORML Founder/Legal Counsel Keith Stroup and NORML Communications Director, Erik Altieri, sat down with Bob Edwards (former host of NPR’s Morning Edition) on his SiriusXM talk radio program. The three discussed a wide range of issues, including the benefits of legalization, current pending legislation, industrial hemp, and more.

“You ask why legalize marijuana? In reality, why we should legalize marijuana is the same as most of the stated goals of the people who say they want prohibition. We want to decrease youth access, we want to create safer communities, we want to better prioritize our law enforcement resources and direct them towards violent crimes. Currently, there is a burglary in this country, a home invasion, at a staggering rate, almost every thirty seconds or so. Meanwhile, we are arresting marijuana smokers at a very similar rate. The difference is, most home burglaries, only about 10 percent of those people are ever caught.

If we can take the police and instead of focusing them on these non-violent crimes, focus them on where the police work should be, protecting their communities, focusing on violent crime like assault and burglary, then we can accomplish these goals that the prohibitionists claim they want, but have failed to achieve over 40 years.” – Erik Altieri, NORML Communications Director

“There is absolutely no basis to treat [marijuana consumers] as criminals. We’re hard working people, we raise families, we pay taxes, we contribute in a positive way to our communities. Criminal prohibition of alcohol didn’t work and it hasn’t worked with marijuana. Finally, the country has come around to that position. We now enjoy the support of the majority of the American public.” – Keith Stroup, NORML Founder and Legal Counsel

You can listen to his interview with National NORML staff below:

For more on The Bob Edwards Show, including where and how you can listen to this and future episodes, click here.

14 thoughts

  1. can i ask someone to put an article up about how gmo cannabis isn’t bad and doesn’t effect it or how the effects of gmo are reversed if the plant is used responsibly at least that’s what i would think based on research anyway and norml thanks for being their when i needed your research the most i hope you hear me this could be big and the brake were looking for if this research is found because its one of the biggest concerns out there right now

  2. Yeah, that’s right. Come here sweetheart, come to daddy. Idaho’s governor Butch Otter’s hair looks funny,and he needs to get a buzz.

  3. When the DEA added CBD’s to the CSA as a schedule 1 substance they successfully checkmated Industrial hemp,,,because they have CBD’s.

  4. Great job reporting guys and girls. I have a problem with averting law enforcement. We have agency set up all over the board with strict duties and guidelines. In my town I had gotten into an argument with my mother a few year back which should of just been a civil matter until the law enforcement showed up with ten officers..Long short i got three days and had to take Domestic Violence classes without actually being able to state my case.. My point is that our system pushes you straight through without finding out what had actually happened, by the way the charges were dropped by my mom and the state decided that they wanted a jab by picking them back up since the O.J. Simpson trial went so well.. So Classes that cost around $600 plus my lawyer who wasn’t cheap stirred up something inside of me that wanted to find out why this was happening to me and other humans.. Well the more that I have dug the more that I realized that there are hundred of thousands of jobs created just by making things illegal to do.. So basically what we have is a giant law enforcement, and private prison build-up just sitting there because we need to create jobs out of thin air and the easiest way to gain revenue and jobs without taxation is to make things illegal or unlawful..I hate to say it but its quiet perverse.. Thomas Jefferson who knew slavery was wrong but needed low income workers for help once said “If the People let Government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under Tyranny..

  5. Respectfully,
    The legalization of marijuana will find its greatest opposition as it emerges from prohibition; that threat stems from Medical Marijuana industry; let me clarify “the industry” not the industries consumers. The Med Marijuana industry would suffer tremendously if the legalization movement achieved its 40+ year goal. The value of their commodity would be slashed; their revenue a shadow of its former self. The ability of the common person to “Grow their Own” will decapitate the Medical Marijuana industry overnight, a fact that they are well aware of. A new conflict is coming but this one is from within, a red headed bastard of a stepson, a warped manifestation of noble intent with strong desire to crush it older and wiser brother.
    Sincerely, Brother Louie

  6. Hey NORML, do you have anybody working in Georgia. There is nothing being promoted in the Georgia market. I know we have a backward environment but at least some effort could be attempted. The medical victims are suffering with only hillbilly heroin available.

    [Editor’s note: NORML has four chapters in GA…and there are other groups too like Georgia Care Project.]

  7. Healthcare choices curbed by fear and modified by the very industry trusted to have a patient’s best interests in hand are paving the way to a 21st century transparency and patient rights focused on an individuals direction instead of the insurance industries profit driven triage.

  8. when did it become the atharaty of any one else but me to say what i can or can not put in my own bodey….for any resin at all ??? for if thay have or are aloud to have this power you are not free. how can you be? wen will you demand ower freedom back from the fed. govnment…………..

  9. its all about the power and money it has absalotly nothing to do with what is best for sociaty as a hole or your helth.or you would not have this problum at all…for if you are free and 21years old you would have the right to choose. i was born in america. i am 52yrs. old yet i have never known freedom!!!!!

  10. mark its always been about the profit margen and alimanating your compatition.i would say the drug and chemical companys with the u.s.government have done a fine job screwing us anhiser bush,jake daniels and all the rest of alcahole companys pay big to keep minopaly in both industres

  11. I am in South Carolina and I have been in contact with the local chapter. I don’t know how much good my phone calls will do but I want to do my part to help the “Cause”,”Cause” we need marijuana legalized in South Carolina, hell, the whole country. I noticed the category of this blog is under entertainment. I have something to give away and I’d like to give y’all first crack at it. My late~Husband and I had always wanted to live off grid. We sold our place in Florida and bought 18.18 acres with 2,000 ft. of the county’s 2nd largest creek in a little place in Tennessee. In 2004 at the age of 45 he passed from lung cancer. He was sick for 6 months then gone.he got it from laying brick. Had it not been for marijuana,he wouldn’t have been able to eat, sleep, relax. I use it to help with my RA and back trouble,etc. Anyway,I have 2 boxes of Mother Earth News,BackWoods Home,CountrySide and Small Stock Journal,Herb Magazines,some Organic Gardening, you get the idea. I waould like to give these to someone who is into gardening,living more self sufficiently you know. I am in Kershaw county, just East of Columbia. If you are interested,you can contact the Columbia,SC chapter and they can put us in touch with eachother,or contact me through facebook.

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