WASHINGTON — Win Without War Executive Director Sara Haghdoosti released the following statement regarding President Biden’s decision to grant pardons for federal marijuana possession convictions:
“The president’s decision to grant pardons for marijuana convictions will change the lives of thousands of people across the United States. It was a move that was long overdue and I am glad President Biden stepped up to use his executive power to end some of the harms caused by the failed, racist War on Drugs. I echo the president’s call to state governors to follow his lead and grant pardons for all state-level marijuana possession convictions. Indeed, the president’s decision is an opening for executives at all levels to further address harms from the War on Drugs by issuing pardons for all non-violent marijuana offenses, and expanding the pardons to include undocumented immigrants.
“These pardons are a victory for the U.S., and especially for communities of color who have long been disproportionate targets of drug enforcement. It also has the potential to be a victory for people around the world harmed by the global War on Drugs. Ending the preposterous classification of marijuana as a schedule 1 substance, as the president recommended, could result in lessened U.S. support for repressive law enforcement agencies abroad and a reduction in violence in South and Central America. Currently, 40 states have legalized marijuana in some form. Until we reform federal policy and legalize across all 50 states, we continue to cement pillars of a long-failed global war on drugs. At this moment, however, the President made a strong step in the right direction.”
Win Without War is a diverse network of activists and national organizations working for progressive foreign policy in the United States.