Everything is discrimination these days, isn’t it?

Everything is discrimination these days, isn’t it?

Well, I don’t think we’ll have to worry about this one, Michael. By the time Arkansas gets its act together on this whole medical marijuana thing sorted out, weed will probably be legal in every state.

I mean that’s where all of this is going in the end.

Marijuana will be 100 percent legal everywhere in the U.S. within 10 years and they’ll taxi it and pass pot-centric laws that will put it on the same level as beer and cigarettes. And really, at this point, you can fuss about it all you want. There’s no stopping it.

But this whole deal you describe does raise the alwaysinteresting gray area of states’ rights versus federal law.

It’s nothing new. The debate goes back to the days of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.

Now, you know I used to teach history, and I’m pretty familiar with the Supremacy Clause, but you fail to mention a little thing called the Tenth Amendment. Tacked right there on the end of the Bill of Rights is a simple one-sentence rule: “The powers 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.”

Seems pretty clear to me. I’ve read the Constitution from “We the People…” to the 27th Amendment, and there’s nothing in there about many of the hot-button issues that have folks howling about state’s rights.

There’s nothing in the Constitution about abortion, the death penalty, marriage licenses, assisted suicide, or affirmative action — and there’s not a word about marijuana.

So… it’s simple, right? The Constitution doesn’t specifically address marijuana, so it should be up to the states to decide.

But, yes, the Supremacy Clause is there, too. So, what do we do? I guess that’s what the Supreme Court is for.

And don’t you worry. That’s exactly where the case you mentioned is going to end up. And that’s exactly where it needs to go because this situation is ridiculous. It’s ridiculous any time you have to operate under two sets of laws — especially ones that so clearly contradict each other.

This nursing home case is actually perfect for this issue.

If there’s anywhere that a worker needs to be at their fullest ability to perform and where being impaired on the job would put lives in danger it’s a nursing home.

You’ve got to be on the employer’s side on this one, right? Surely, if a potential employee can’t pass a drug test, you can’t put them in charge of taking care of invalid or disabled elderly folks, right? Right?

Maybe not.

You know, employee/employer rules and laws are already a muddled mess, with differing policies from state to state. And like you note, in other states, the ruling has come down exactly the opposite way in similar cases.

Well, this ruling, as you note changes things. The lid is off the “pot” so to speak, and now the pro-toking lobby has something to hold on to when arguing their side.

And you know what? They’ve got a point. Or at least as valid a point as the Pro Life groups trying to ban abortion state-by-state. Or the Anti-Gun groups trying to circumvent the Second Amendment. Or the U.S. Coalition to Give Annual Stipends to Left-Handed Americans… Oh wait, that’s my personal special interest groups (and I’m only kind-of half-joking. Everyone else gets special treatment, and lefties are definitely living in a right-handed world).

But the writing is on the wall here. Marijuana is either going to be legal or it’s not. If it is, then it will, as you note, open up a whole new can of worms as far as being high in the workplace goes.

It will be up to the courts to decide and until then, we’re stuck with this mess.

By Ralph Hardin

SHARE