While you may have a personal issue with the legalization of this plant, the most important question to ask yourself is this; “Do you believe in the rule of law, based on the Constitution, or do you think it would be OK to chart a different course “just this one time?”
Our nation was founded as a Constitutional Republic, and as such, we are to be ruled by a system of laws. These laws are codified in the United States Constitution.
The Commerce Clause, as it is more commonly known, or Article 1 Section 8 Clause 3, as it is legally known, delegates power to the Congress to regulate the buying and selling of products across state lines(including land) but never included agriculture, manufacturing, mining or land use.(Nevada Law Journal, Spring 2003, By Robert G. Natelson, pgs486-487, sect J titled “The Enumerated Powers of States”)
Industrialized hemp is regulated currently by the Controlled Substance Act of 1970. While it is technically legal to grow, the Drug Enforcement Agency requires farmers to apply for a permit to do so. These permits are very rarely ever granted.
Hemp can be used to make clothing, rope, paper, fuel oil, yarn, carpeting, and insulation, among other things. It is no wonder then that the large corporations and their lobbying arms, which helps to control the regulation of these products, don’t want to allow hemp farming to be easy and commonplace.
The National governement’s prohibition of industrialized hemp means that America imports 400 million dollars worth of products that contain hemp, which can not be made in country.(figures from the Congressional Resource Service Report, 24 July 2013)
So then, what is the remedy?
Some states are beginning the process of nullifying National bans and regulations on hemp. This is a good first action. Each state should look at this as a huge positive. By growing hemp for industrial uses, they can benefit the bottom line and also chop the National encroachment of our rights at the knees. If each state grew and manufactured their own hemp products and sold them only inside that particular sovereign state, then the National government would have no legal standing under the afore mentioned Commerce Clause.
The second action would come a little later. The hesitant states would quickly see how the others were benefitting economically. The hemp growing states import costs would be reduced and the unemployment rate would drop as well. Not to mention, the new jobs created to build and maintain the facilities, the machinery that would need to be built, and the transportation and distribution networks that would need to be put in place. After a few months, what state legislature would be able to deny the monetary and personal benefits of just saying YES to hemp?
Tenth Amendment Center
The Tenth Amendment Center is a national think tank that works to preserve and protect the principles of strictly limited government through information, education, and activism. The center serves as a forum for the study and exploration of state and individual sovereignty issues, focusing primarily on the decentralization of federal government power as required by the Constitution. For more information visit the Tenth Amendment Center Blog.