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Manufacturers in Connecticut Speak Out Against Legalization


In my daily search through news relating to cannabis, I came across an article about manufacturers in Connecticut coming out against efforts in the state to legalize marijuana for adult-use. In reading through it, an unusual number of alarm bells went off in my head, and before I was even to the end I knew I had to write about this subject.

In a nutshell, Connecticut is home to several defense contractors who admittedly make very complicated and dangerous weapons. Some of these companies have been speaking out against legalization because they don’t want their employees using marijuana. I usually don’t make a list of the problems with something – I try to be a little more creative and dynamic with my writing – but there is just too much here, so a list it is.

  1. Those who use marijuana are not infringing on the rights of anyone else, therefore it is no one else’s business if they legally purchase and consume marijuana. 
  2. Even under prohibition, millions of people are using marijuana. Legalization won’t make cannabis available for people to buy; it will just allow them to do so legally.
  3. People are using much more debilitating substances on a daily basis, alcohol and prescription drugs being just two of the most obvious examples.
  4. Not for nothing, but how many innocent people have died from the weapons these people make? The notion that a defense contractor has qualms about a substance as safe as marijuana being legalized strikes me as tragically ironic.

Just to be clear, my opinion on employers drug-testing prospective employees is different from most in the cannabis law reform movement. In short, I feel a company shouldn’t be forced by the government to accept marijuana users as employees. I think that if they insist on testing employees for marijuana, then they should face the market consequences of that decision: namely, a shrinking pool of labor to get employees from, which will in turn put upward pressure on the wages they have to pay the possible employees that are left. Their decision to test for marijuana will affect them in the bottom line, and if they continue to do so, so be it. Call them out, shun them, boycott them, never give them your business ever again if possible.

And while I realize you have little choice as consumers when it comes to companies like defense contractors – after all, none of you will be buying an F-35 anytime soon – in the end, whatever protections are put into Connecticut legalization for employees, companies like these will be exempt from those rules anyway.

To be sure, I think judging someone on how much THC they have in their pee is stupid, hypocritical, counterproductive and will ultimately hurt the company that chooses to do it. In any case, whether someone who doesn’t work for them has the ability to buy legal marijuana is none of a company owners’ business. It’s no one’s business, except for the person who consumes the cannabis.

Many are quick to elicit opinions from others on legalization without ever questioning why. Why should their opinion be important? I know why it is, namely, political realities – but why should it be? 

In this case, maybe defense contractors should be worried about more efficient ways of killing people they’ve never met instead of worrying about people they’ve never met smoking a joint in their own house.