The Offender

Matt Baker is mistaken about his job


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Despite an overwhelming majority vote for medical marijuana in the PA senate, Matt Baker in the House of Representatives says that he has no intention of ever letting the bill come up for a vote in his committee.  This all being despite the senate vote being roughly the same as the general population’s approval rating of medical marijuana.  The people that Mr. Baker is obligated to represent.  Mr. Baker has repeatedly used words that simply do not resonate with younger people today.  We have heard Mr. Baker make every accusation, excuse, and flimsy reason for why he does not want the medical marijuana bill to go through.  Today the penalties for being caught with a small amount of marijuana in most parts of the state is burdening our court systems and costing the tax payers millions of dollars.  Not to mention that the illegalization of the plant is making an otherwise law abiding community interact with the black market, this as well as incarcerating otherwise good citizens and taking any opportunity for gainful employment from them.  Ultimately this is leading to higher crime rates and many lives being ruined.  

Mr. Baker has expressed some concerns that are very common among people who do not support any type of marijuana legalization or decriminalization.  And you know what?  Good for him.  I am very happy that he has his opinions.  Because I have mine.  And this is America.  Part of the beauty of this country is the right to have your own opinion.  But the way that Mr. Baker has enforced his one-sided opinion is decidedly Un-American, he has swept away everything that makes this country great.  Not because he is out there arguing his righteous argument that has yet to satisfy anyone, he is simply going to never officially acknowledge it.  If you love America (I would assume Mr. Baker would publicly acknowledge his love for this country) then one of the ideas that you must accept is that if your opinion is not the majority, then you must live with their opinion being the law of the land.  Apparently that does not apply to a man that has no problem abusing his power to essentially call the majority of Pennsylvanians stupid.  He has effectively bypassed the process of a democracy, has knowingly gone against what the overwhelming majority of the people that he is supposed to represent clearly want, and he seems perfectly happy with this arrangement.

Why wouldn’t he be?  Heads of committees in the HOR have been doing this since the HOR was formed.  An argument that Mr. Baker has readily made.  That was good enough 200 years ago so it is good enough today right?  Infidelity seems to be a common theme with a lot of politicians for well over 200 years, does Mr. Baker also happily endorse the practice of infidelity?   Even if politicians have been doing this forever, do they normally exercise this power with something that has the public attention like marijuana does right now?  Is it usually with a bill that has a huge majority favor with both the senate and the general population?  No?  Then this seems to be an abuse of power.  Yes?  Then that system is 100% broken and needs to be fixed before the house gets their next paycheck.  I cannot imagine the guts required to basically tell 80% of the people that I represent, amongst them the very ill and suffering, to shove it.  As if I had any experience or justifiable point of view on the matter.  Mr. Baker has repeatedly said that the federal government does not acknowledge any medical uses for marijuana so neither does he.  I assume that is the same government that invaded Iraq because of their enormous stockpile of WMD’s?  The pain relief alone (which is absolutely clear to anybody that has ever actually tried marijuana) provided by marijuana in relationship to the side effects are worth legalizing it.  Has he tried marijuana? Has he ever been around someone that uses marijuana regularly?  When he pictures a person using marijuana, does he picture them doing it next to a filthy dumpster in the rain at night surrounded by trash?  Just waiting for their next victim to walk by so that they can rape, murder, and rob them?  No wonder he does not want any parts of marijuana! That is the image that was always portrayed to me as a child in school and on television.  But I am willing to bet that if indeed marijuana is causing that person to behave in that manner, it is because of what politicians like Mr. Baker have been doing for years, creating a steady supply of lifelong criminals out of otherwise would-be respectable and productive members of society.

Cracking down on drugs is a worthy endeavor.  After all drugs are a huge problem in society.  But like most things, there are levels.  Mr. Baker and politicians like him have given us their level.  Without a prescription that level is alcohol and cigarettes.  I would say that marijuana is on the same level as alcohol and cigarettes, if not a couple of levels below with something a little less toxic, something like a cough drop maybe.  Mr. Baker disagrees, because that is not what the federal government says.  I guess he has no perspective of his own on the subject, I am glad that the bill is in such a qualified persons committee.  Of course Mr. Baker would point out that the alcohol/tobacco/marijuana argument has been made by those darn pot people for years.  He is right.  But would Mr. Baker vote against teaching the Pythagorean Theorem in school?  It is pretty old too.  But the Pythagorean Theorem was proven to be true thousands of years ago.  The difference between his old arguments and ours is that ours have incorporated the collective knowledge of the past 75 years.  Mr. Baker’s knowledge and opinion seem to be based on pre 1940’s data.  It is based off of extremely biased and laughable reasoning.  The truth is that many productive members of society smoke marijuana on a fairly regular basis.  With the current state of the laws however, if that person is caught, their life usually goes into shambles and they may never recover what the charges took from them.  Sometimes that person is even sent to jail.  Once a person is sent to jail for the first time, there is a very high likelihood that they will end up committing more crimes.  It is a by-product of the system that we put them into.  It does not sound to me like marijuana or that person is responsible for that man being a criminal and all of the pain and suffering that he and his potential victims would face.  That is on the hands of politicians who like to get around the system to enforce a law that they like more than the population they represent.  I have met many such people that have had their livelihoods stolen from them for possession of small amounts of marijuana.  I also risk it every day.  It is a strong cause of anxiety in my life.

Slander and the reinforcement of faulty or clearly untrue ideas is one of the most harmful things that a society can do to itself.  When we start to accept these political ideologies of people that really have no clue what they are talking about you get things like the SS and ISIS.  Mr. Baker probably looks at the higher and higher number of people flowing into Pennsylvania’s legal system for the possession or selling of marijuana and worry’s that there is a growing problem with drug abuse and crimes being committed in Pennsylvania.  Maybe he should look at it like this: should we really be surprised that so many use something that a majority of the population endorses for outright legalization?  The majority seems to grow larger every day.  So I would expect the number of people entering the legal system to keep rising.  That is why something that is endorsed by the majority of people is usually what the law says, otherwise you should be prepared to have to put more than half of your population in prison.