Three years ago I thought this election was going to be a moral no win situation.
I was certain that an increasingly emboldened right wing would nominate libertarian golden boy, Rand Paul. He would easily steal the pro-cannabis and anti-war vote away from a Democratic party that seemed poised to run a pro-drug war, pro-big pharma, neo-conservative chickenhawk, in the form of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. What was worse is knowing, that I would hold my nose and vote for the aforementioned chickenhawk, because the economic policies of a libertarian would fair so much worse for my teenage daughter that I could not in good conscience allow one to assume the presidency. Three years ago I could not imagine Hillary coming out in favor of rescheduling marijuana; let alone the vomit inducing horror of the GOP nomination fight nor the abominations it would give rise to. I overestimated an embolden right-wing’s capacity for reason; I could not imagine them fighting over whether to follow a narcissistic fascist or a manipulative theocrat, to defeat in November.
This is a dark time in the election process, darker than the hell I imagined. Ted Cruz (AKA the Zodiac Killer) will never lift the prohibition because Jesus told Abraham to kill his son for smoking strange herbs in the temple and then selling the blunt ashes to the catholic kids who missed mass on Ash Wednesday; or some other highly obscure Biblical mojo. Trump may come around to rescheduling or decriminalization, when he makes his general election turn to the center, but I have no reason to believe it anymore than people should believe his claim to a conservative orthodoxy, that his past media and personal lifestyle demonstrates to be a lie or johnny-come-lately religion, at best. Trump’s political flexibility is doubly remarkable, when you take into account that it eclipses the death row devotion Hillary Clinton has fought for progressive causes. In addition to her Iraq War vote she has a history for being an apologetic incrementalist: we know this bill is the not best bill but it’s the best we can get now, is the real Clinton legacy. I lived through the nineties, they had a million ways to say that phrase; whether it was mandatory minimum sentences or Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, that was their kool aid to make the cyanide go down easier.
There is the guy who is forcing Hillary to the left on so many fronts. She has to take the position of considering rescheduling because her primary opposition is Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders who has legislation in the Senate to strike marijuana from the federal criminal code. Period; full stop. To be clear she wants it to seem like there is no daylight between her and Senator Sanders. She is willing to consider having the FDA determine that instead of treating marijuana like it is as dangerous as heroin, we will now treat it as being as dangerous as Oxycontin. He has pending legislation that says marijuana should no longer be a federally criminalized substance, so the states can decide what is best for their communities. That’s not daylight; that’s both the suns of Tattooine glaring in the space between those two positions. Which brings us back to the horrible reality, so unyielding it has to described in metapors with physics; Clinton has all the gravity of the Democratic party pulling her to victory. Momentum can only overcome gravity by playing along with it and Bernie has done anything but that. Still with a tiny glimmer of hope and only momentum to hang it on, Bernie has already done the impossible; through will and momentum he forced a gravitational object to follow him.
Is it hopeless? I can’t answer that yet. That is more or less asking if enough potheads in Oregon and California changed their registration to Democrat and are planning to vote in the primary in order to nominate Bernie. That’s asking if enough of the super delegates will turn their votes to back the candidate who is more trusted and more consistent on every issue and in every general election poll. This writer hopes so; because if I have to watch Clinton tack back to the right for November, I am not sure I will be able to hold my nose tight enough.
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