States’ rights were upheld in a ruling from the Arizona Supreme Court which said that federal law does not trump state law. A women from California with a medical marijuana card and marijuana was pulled over in Arizona, which also has a medical marijuana law, and had her marijuana confiscated, although she was not charged with possession of drugs. The higher court upheld a lower court’s ruling that said the marijuana must be returned to the owner, according to the Daily Caller.
The Arizona Supreme Court is letting stand a lower court’s ruling that the Yuma County sheriff must return marijuana seized from a woman with a California medical marijuana authorization honored by Arizona.
While this may seem like a trivial case, it actually strengthens states’ rights by saying that a state law is not voided by federal law; “[p]rosecutors argued that federal drug law invalidates Arizona’s medical marijuana law”. This court’s ruling says that states each have the right to make laws which do not deal with the expressed powers of the federal government in the Constitution, nor violate the rights of individuals. For this reason it essentially is a pro 10th amendment ruling, the 10th Amendment reading: “The power not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people”.
The fact is that the federal government never had the proper authority to ban marijuana, a plant with uses far exceeding the drug aspects. When you actually think about the absurdity of the federal government banning a plant, you have got to wonder where they found the justification for doing so. No doubt the Commerce Clause was used as an excuse, with congress claiming the ability to regulate the plant on the basis of interstate regulation. The focus was put on the intoxicating potential of the plant, ignoring its use for paper, food, fuel, rope, oil and research into other potential uses for the versatile and fast growing plant.
If the government can outlaw one plant, why can’t it outlaw any plant? This ruling is a good step which may allow states to begin reclaiming their sovereignty from the federal government. There are so many laws and agencies which could be ended in the name of the Tenth Amendment if the Supreme Court was serious about implementing the Constitution. Instead we have a federal government who thinks its laws are above state laws. Federal bullying of states has been going on for too long, and the way to wrest control from the feds and give it back to the states is to repeal the 16th and 17th amendments.