Though shalt have no other God than…Weed.
The Religious Freedom Restoration Act Governor Mike Pence signed into law in Indiana will have definite repercussions for his state, his reputation, and his political career. The poorly written, extremely vague legislation designed to allow Indianans to discriminate against the LGBT community may also have an unforeseen benefit: Legalized marijuana.
As Governor Pence himself put it, “this law is about protecting our citizens from government overreach.” Translating that into layman’s terms is easy enough: If you discriminate against gay people there will be no repercussions.
What about other religious beliefs? Can a KKK baker refuse to bake a cake for a black couple? They’re probably dumb enough to try under the new law, without realizing that racial minorities are protected under anti-discrimination laws, something the gay community is not.
Indiana has in essence created legal dogma that other unprotected classes of people, such as pot smokers, may be able to exploit.
Enter the newly formed First Church of Cannabis, an established religion in the state of Indiana as of March 28th. The church’s founder is a Libertarian marketing director named Bill Levin, who believes in God and the power of His miraculous plant. Levin posted the approval from Indiana’s Secretary of State that The First Church Of Cannabis Inc. has been approved.
By Pence’s own admittal, someone belonging to the church could claim “religious freedom” if caught with weed and get off scot-free. After all, Pence says the law protects people “at the highest level of the law.”
The scenario would most-likely play out like this:
A person who is charged with possession of marijuana pleads not guilty and goes to trial claiming religious freedom. Under information and fact that person is convicted of the crime, and the appeals process begins. That appeal would make its way through the courts until the Indiana State Supreme Court makes a decision on the legality of the law and its intentions, which would either legalize marijuana in Indiana or overturn Pence’s atrocity.
Then of course there’s the possibility the case winds through federal courts, landing in the US Supreme Court. Wouldn’t it be hysterical if Mike Pence’s dimwitted law ended up being the precedent for the legalization of marijuana nationwide?
That pesky 14th amendment and all.
Tokers can dream, can’t they?
H/T: The New Civil Rights Movement | Image: Facebook