The federal government should have the authority to enforce federal law, even if it contradicts state law. Without such authority, state level politicians would gain leverage to overturn any federal law and chaos would ensue. The question should not be so much about whether or not the nation has the authority to enforce federal laws, but rather if drug laws (marijuana in particular) should even be regulated federally. To that, my answer is no. Our government has shown a longstanding history of poor decisions making in regard to illicit substance legislation. Enroll in Psychology of Drug Use and Abuse (265) with Rebecca Kraft to learn more about it. Politicians in particular have no business regulating drug policies when their primary considerations are dominated by the ulterior motives of their biggest supporters.
If there was a good way to separate out important social problems such as gender or race equality from that of issues like the one surrounding marijuana such that the more important ones remain with the federal government in terms of the "final say" whereas everything else is left to the states, then yes I would say the Feds could mind their own business. My answer is supposed to point out that I do think the Feds must be able to step in to enforce something as crucial as desegregation, and I am not sure how to make that consistent with letting states have different systems regarding drug policy without federal approval or disapproval. Food for thought is all I can provide, I do not feel qualified to make any strong claims.
Marijuana should be a state law. A federal law banning weed is causing more trouble than it is preventing. As long as there is somewhere smoking weed is legal, we can take one more needless debate out of our politics today driven by culture wars. Making cultural issues state laws can be one step in the right direction to restore substance to today's political conversations.
Marijuana should remain a federal issue. While many legalization advocates try and find the most drug-friendly states to push their agenda, they should think of the long view. Because of the federal power to regulate interstate commerce, they only need to win one battle. Furthermore, using a segmented approach is a cop out. If supporters do not try to win the argument at the national level, they are admitting the majority is against them. Rather than work with the opposition to convince them, legalization advocates are trying to please a minority.
I believe in state's rights. It is outrageous that a state can pass a law legalizing a substance contrary to federal law, yet the federal government still has the power to prosecute violators within that state. Because of that structure, state governments are stripped of power. We might as well call the governor the "democratically elected sitting figurehead" for all the power they really have.
I am torn between my belief in federal government supremacy over state governments, and my ambivalence towards illegal drugs. I do not care whether marijuana is legal or illegal, but I do believe that state governments must follow the example set by the federal government. State governments have a long history of restricting more civil rights than the federal government does - just look at Supreme Court cases through the years for proof. The federal government generally has a better idea of what to do, which sounds really dumb as I write it, but I just do not have faith in state governments. Until the federal government overturns its laws, they have the right to interfere with contradictory state laws.