Judge Napolitano on Marijuana: People Bear Their own Responsibility

It’s Time To Legalize Marijuana. Judge Napolitano


The judge, as always, makes strong and clear arguments.

FOX: We’ve had such a hard time convincing people not to drink and drive, I think a lot of people would be worried that you start making recreation use of marijuana legal, its gonna make that task to get people to stop from smoking and driving even more difficult.

Judge: The government should be more concerned about people making choices for themselves and about them bearing their own responsibility, than about trying to take care of them. You’re not buying this?

Judge Napolitano hit on the point of people bearing their own responsibility, but didn’t give examples, such as bearing responsibility for your own health and well being, and bearing responsibility for not harming others in public.

Texting, drinking alcohol, putting on makeup, or being sleep deprived are all areas where people should be held accountable for putting others at risk while driving. In the privacy of your own home it is the individual’s responsibility, and not the governments’ responsibility, to decide for themselves if and when they are putting themselves at risk.

Contrary to popular belief, Libertarians are not opposed to traffic regulations. Libertarians believe that you should be free to live your life as you choose, as long as you don’t interfere with someone else’s rights or cause them harm. Just because you might be able to drive on the wrong side of the road for some time and not hurt anyone does not mean there isn’t strong potential to do harm to others.

The problem the judge ran into is there is no quick sound-bite to sum up that when you are in public, regardless of your condition or circumstances, you are responsible for not harming others. It does not matter how one impairs their driving ability, but it does matter that people take responsibility when putting others at risk.

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Four Beheaded in the War on Drugs

(Reuters) -Thirteen killed in crime wave at Mexico’s Acapulco

Thirteen people were killed in and around the Mexican beach resort of Acapulco early on Saturday in apparent drug-related violence, with four victims found beheaded, security officials said. WORLD Five of those killed were police officers whose night-time patrol was attacked by gunmen on the outskirts of Acapulco, a Pacific Ocean resort popular with tourists, the security officials said in a statement. The bullet-riddled bodies of eight other men were discovered in different areas around Acapulco, and four of them had been beheaded, the officials added.

One of the reasons alcohol prohibition was repealed in the US was the public became fed up with stories just like this. How many more innocent people must die before we learn the same lesson: that drug prohibition does not decrease addiction or crime?  The reason for drug prohibition was to protect innocent lives, and yet here again drug prohibition results in the murder of innocent people.

Just as banning pizza would not cause the nation to loose weight because there would still be plenty of other ways to get fat, ending drug prohibition will not lead to an increase in addicts. It will just give those with addiction problems more ways to destroy their lives. Those seeking to escape from reality will always find something that isn’t in their best interest to fulfill their desire. There has been, and always will be, a certain percent of the population that has a propensity to become addicted to something.

There are people who do not touch alcohol even though its legal, because they see it as a harm to their lives. These same people won’t be rushing out to buy illicit drugs once they become legal. If drug prohibition were ended, there are those that would prefer one addictive drug to another. They would switch from alcohol to a drug, but the number of addicts would basically stay the same.

How many more murders does it take to see the cure is worse than the disease?

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No Universal Insurance from Overreaching Government

This section of John Stossel’s “Hands Off My Meds” has a clip with physician Dr. Frank Fisher. Prosecutors indicted Fisher for the deaths of several patients by prescribing pain medication. The Doctor spent five months in jail and spent all of his money on legal fees before finally being acquitted. The doctor mentions he is fifty-six years old and is basically starting over because the cost of defending himself left him with a net worth of zero.


The clip from didn’t fully explain just how unfairly Dr. Fisher was treated by the legal system. Here is a bit from Stop the Drug War (stopthedrugwar.org) on Dr. Fisher:

It was Medi-Cal fraud charges that were at the core of Fisher’s latest legal case. Prosecutors originally charged Fisher with 99 counts of medical fraud regarding Medi-Cal claims and improper prescribing, but a state court judge dismissed all but eight misdemeanor counts of improper billing earlier this year. Now, he has been found innocent.

“Over five years ago, Attorney General Bill Lockyer came to Redding and declared that by arresting and detaining Dr. Fisher, his prosecutors had shut down the biggest drug ring in the history of Northern California,” Reynolds continued. “Apparently unaware that aggressive pain management had become a widely recognized imperative of mainstream medicine, Lockyer sought to characterize Dr. Fisher’s practice as sinister. Most of Dr. Fisher’s patients have been unable to obtain the quality of pain care they’d received from him, hundreds have deteriorated unnecessarily, and several have died as a result. At the time of Dr. Fisher’s arrest, for example, twenty-five people who had been working, with Dr. Fisher’s help, were forced to apply for full disability. In response, PRN intends to hold the State of California and participating counties and municipalities accountable for their wanton and reckless conduct.”

Here’s what one juror had to say to Dr. Fisher in an e-mail he received after the trial: “I was juror #1. Now that I am home and can read about you on the Internet, my heart really goes out to you for what you have been through. I was upset that the prosecutor wasted my time and the court’s time on such a weak case. But now that I know what you have really been through I feel embarrassed and selfish to be thinking about my own time. I hope you can reopen your clinic some day and get back to practicing medicine, in your office or back room or anywhere you choose. Thanks for doing the job most doctors won’t.”

What caught my attention with Stossel’s show was the discussion about fairness and medicine. In the health care debate the argument is often made that it is unfair for someone to lose all their life saving do to an illness. It a tragedy when someone loses all their saving do to an illness, but its not an injustice and has nothing to do with being fair. What is unfair, is when someone loses everything due to an injustice. Life is fair, and only people can choose to be unfair and unjust.

What is unfair is there is no call to protect people who have had their life savings destroyed by acts of an overreaching government. There is no call for a universal insurance policy to cover individuals like Dr. Fisher from the reckless conduct of zealous prosecutors. No charts or graphs to show the increasing costs of defending yourself in a free country. Not a word of debate over how people can continue to afford living free when the cost of freedom has risen to everything you own plus time in prison.

There is no comparison between wanting the government to be concerned about helping its citizens when the randomness of life deals them a tragedy, and the callousness of government causing a tragedy, because the first is about charity and the second really is about fairness.

If the government is concerned about protecting people from unfairly being wiped out, it should start by looking at itself.

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