CW: More and more we see rational and real reasoning coming to the forefront of the debate. It is encouraging that back police officers see the disparity in the community and are putting their political capitol up to bring this madness to an end. Thanks.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 19, 2010
CONTACT: Tom Angell – (202) 557-4979 or firstname.lastname@example.org
National Black Police Association Endorses Marijuana Legalization
African American Cops Say California’s Prop. 19 Will Protect Civil
Rights & Public Safety
SACRAMENTO, CA — A national organization of African American law
enforcement officers has announced its endorsement of Proposition 19,
California’s initiative to legalize marijuana.
The National Black Police Association (NBPA), which was founded in 1972
and is currently holding its 38th national conference in Sacramento, is
urging a yes vote on legalization this November 2.
“When I was a cop in Baltimore, and even before that when I was growing
up there, I saw with my own eyes the devastating impact these misguided
marijuana laws have on our communities and neighborhoods. But it’s not
just in Baltimore, or in Los Angeles; prohibition takes a toll on people
of color across the country,” said Neill Franklin, a 33-year veteran
police officer and executive director of Law Enforcement Against
Prohibition (LEAP), an international group of pro-legalization cops,
judges, prosecutors and corrections officials who have been organizing
to support Prop. 19. “This November, with the National Black Police
Association’s help, Californians finally have an opportunity to do
something about it by approving the initiative to control and tax
On Thursday, Franklin spoke alongside California NAACP president Alice
Huffman at the NBPA conference on a panel about criminal justice issues
like marijuana legalization.
Many cops and civil rights leaders are now speaking out against
marijuana prohibition because it is not only ineffective at reducing
marijuana use and results in the arrest and incarceration of people of
color at a highly disproportionate rate, but also because making
marijuana illegal has created a lucrative black market controlled by
violent gangs and cartels. LEAP has organized a group of more than 30
California police officers, judges, prosecutors and other criminal
justice professionals who support Prop. 19.
Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) and its 30,000 supporters
represent police, prosecutors, judges, FBI/DEA agents and others who
want to legalize and regulate drugs after fighting on the front lines of
the “war on drugs” and learning firsthand that prohibition only serves
to worsen addiction and violence.
According to NBPA, there are 80,000 black law enforcement officials in