Shae Sortwell

[[Note: Shae responded to our questionnaire request with the following explanation and asked that it be used in lieu of the questionnaire responses.]]

Your survey has questions that I don’t  feel really take into account the full scope of the legal issues affecting this issue.

So, I decided to answer the principle of the issue directly here rather than try to fit my position into the individual questions asked. Here is my position.

The issue is much more complex than people like to pretend that it is. While i personally have no issue with cannabis (from a legal standpoint. I’ve never used it myself and don’t intend to), we need to consider the issue in entirety.

No matter what we do at the state level, cannabis is still federally illegal. Unless we hold to the 250 year old argument of state nullification of federal law (which has been ruled illegal by the Supreme Court), then the Federal Law still stands.

It is an uncertain issue at the moment federally. President Trump has hinted that maybe this issue ought to fall to the states. I agree. At the same time, we have Federal Attorney General who has already hassled the state of Wisconsin for something as non-controversial as CBD oil.

This is very concerning to me. I hesitate to legalize and put the state stamp of approval on something when there is a Federal government threatening to prosecute citizens for its use.

We could well have many people who are intending to follow the law because Wisconsin “legalized” it, only to then get prosecuted by Federal authorities. I do not want to set the people of Wisconsin up for failure and make criminals out of people who are intending to follow the law.

Federally, they ought to allow full medical research and it really ought to be an issue handled by the states as it is not a power granted to the federal government in the Constitution.

As far as what the state can do under current circumstances, I would support decriminalization rather than legalization. This would prevent people thinking that there was no penalty and actually would offer citizens a certain level of protection from federal prosecution since they would likely face a minimal fine from the state and double jeopardy laws would prevent the feds from going further if the person had already received a penalty.