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In 16 years, America has gone from a president who said he smoked marijuana but "didn't inhale" to a president who "inhaled; that was the point." President Obama does not deserve to be put in jail for smoking marijuana; neither do the at least three other former Presidents who have smoked it. The point is, no one does, and the Obama administration should put a stop to the hundreds of thousands of marijuana arrests that happen each year in this country.

Letter to
President of the United States
Your administration should stop arresting consenting adults for using or growing marijuana for personal, medical, or research purposes.

You, Mr. President, have smoked marijuana, inhaled, and that was the point. You don't deserve to be put in jail for it. At least three other presidents have smoked marijuana, and they also don't deserve to be put in jail for it. The hundreds of thousands of marijuana arrests that happen each year in this country are therefore complete hypocrisy.

You've even admitted to using cocaine when you were younger, and the American people don't seem to be holding it against you. You're very open about your struggle, like that of millions of Americans, with addiction to one of the world's most powerful drugs: nicotine.

You agree with many of us about treating drug use as a health issue and not a criminal justice one. You continue to talk about reforming mandatory minimum sentencing and repealing the federal syringe ban that is responsible for hundreds of thousands of Americans contracting HIV/AIDS, viral hepatitis and other infectious diseases.

Your attorney general indicated recently that the U.S. Justice Department is going to stop wasting federal resources arresting medical marijuana patients and providers. The tide is turning in favor of reason, and compassion: California is considering a bill to legalize, tax and regulate marijuana, and the New Jersey Senate recently voted to legalize marijuana for medical use.

Together, we can end the senseless, violent prohibition on marijuana, if you stop arresting people now for what you've done yourself.

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