A couple weeks ago the Berkeley, California city council unanimously voted to declare Berkeley a sanctuary city for licensed marijuana businesses and users. Now other cities and some states that have legalized pot are considering doing the same thing.
Sanctuary cities up until now have been cities that have declared they will not cooperate with the federal government in enforcing federal immigration laws. What Berkeley did was extend the concept to federal anti-marijuana laws.
According to an Associated Press story, bills are pending in the Alaska, California and Massachusetts legislatures to declare them marijuana sanctuary states. (California is already a sanctuary state for illegal immigration.) Whether or not they will pass remains to be seen, but the fact that they have been introduced at all is radical. Really radical.
That’s because the sanctuary city concept, whether applied to federal immigration or marijuana laws, is both an assertion of states’ rights and arguably a form of nullification.
And the federal government thinks “nullification” is a very bad