Vote Yes on Amendment A & 26

I’m encouraging everyone to vote for these two items on the ballot in November.

My endorsement probably doesn’t mean a hill of beans, because I think most people have their minds made up about legalization.

The South Dakota Chamber has been leading a Bullsh*t campaign from the beginning. Why? Because rumor has it that internal polling done by the Chamber shows Medical has broad support. I’m not sure what Rec is polling but my guess is if Medical is doing that well, Rec probably is also.

So why the fight on one and not the other? Besides the polling, even if 26 passes, it is just an initiative and the Legislature can overturn it. If Rec passes, the legislature cannot touch it because ‘A’ is a constitutional amendment.

But what probably scares the Chamber even more is that the Amendment dictates how much of the the tax revenue goes towards education. In other words, the legislature can’t raid the fund like they did when they increased sales taxes for teacher pay.

Whether you use or not, here are some important things to consider, and one of the main reasons I support both measures; It will save taxpayers millions each year in justice and legal costs and will generate millions in tax revenue, not just for education but for the general fund. Better Schools. Better Roads. Better Courts.

The ‘social cost’ of usage probably won’t change much under our current system of black market, instead as taxpayers we will finally reap the benefits of making it legal.

Don’t be fooled by a bunch of pencil pushers at the Chamber. Decriminalization is sweeping the country, it’s only inevitable nationwide, we might as well get a jump on it now.


#1 D@ily Spin on 10.04.20 at 8:25 am

I agree, vote yes. Pot is no more harmful than tobacco or alcohol. Some I’ve known use it for specific needs and/or because they can’t afford prescriptions. The ‘buzz’ is peaceful and not violent like alcohol. Federal interference with individual choice doesn’t work. It didn’t work for prohibition.

#2 "Very Stable Genius" on 10.04.20 at 11:16 am

The legalization of Mary Jane is not about any true libertarian interest or right. It’s about the potential tax dollars.

Once again, we found a way to tax the little guy and gal as the wealthy laugh all of the way to the bank; and who will be the only ones, the wealthy that is, who really profit from this new or eventual legalization as well.

As far as the de-criminalizing of Mary Jane and the racial aspect of that concern. The legalization of Mary Jane will destroy an economy for the poor, which will not be replaced for them as the mechanisms of this trade will be transferred to a pre-dominantly white, and richer, class of people. Those forces which oppress the poor and minorities in particular will still be in force after the legalization, with the legalization offering no true answer for the empowerment of the disenfranchised ones in our society, who both suffer and gain from the status quo, in terms of Mary Jane.

The legalization of Mary Jane comes to us at a time when we have won, for the most part, the battle with tobacco and have come far over the last 35 years in dealing with those who drive under an influence. Perhaps, these successes give us a false confidence to legalize Mary Jane like a people who go into debt when they have no debt, or elect a Jesse Ventura as governor, when the economy is strong and terrorism is not on their radar.

The South Dakota Democratic Party’s support of the legalization is truly unfortunate. It’s merely an attempt at a short time vote “high” or gain, for a long term pain, as the tax dollars to be garnered from this legalization are regressive and against what the SDDP should be for, but sadly its the only hope the SDDP can offer to the people of South Dakota, since it does not have the clout or guts to honestly gather a credible voter base from which to elect, and then enact, true taxation reform in this state, and then from that, the resources to truly and honestly address issues like poverty and equality.

#3 l3wis on 10.04.20 at 11:51 am

While I understand your opposition, there are a couple of things I thought of after I posted this;

• People are already smoking weed in our state. This won’t stop no matter how this vote goes. But if it passes, as I pointed out above, the illegal revenue that now goes to other states (mostly Colorado – which has been confirmed by our police chief on a couple of ocassions) will become legal revenue that stays here. It will also create small businesses. I do know of several people interested in the legal growth of the plant, and trust me, they are NOT Chamber members or millionaires, but already own a couple of successful small businesses in town.

Secondly, I think that most cities in SD, including Sioux Falls will fight dispensaries, and they can do so legally with zoning. Even if this passes, I think it will close to a year before you even see a legally zoned dispensary in the area, which I’m guessing will mostly be 10 miles out of town on a gravel county road somewhere. Most people will have to grow their own if they want it.

#4 "Very Stable Genius" on 10.04.20 at 3:10 pm

Well, I think legalization is inevitable, whether it happens this time or in the future. I am on the wrong side of history, if one keeps track of wins and losses, but I think I am on the right side of history if we care about sound public policy.

Plus, it’s illegal still at the federal level and why isn’t anyone bothered by that? I thought liberals especially believed in federalism. What happen to presidents upholding the constitution and the laws of our country, Trump or not?

But then again we live in a time when health care systems sponsor gage fighting, downtown development is severely dependent upon alcohol, while overall economic development is dependent upon health care, and we have a nation that puts out cigarettes and then sets back and allows vaping to take off.

Did you notice that vaping wasn’t a problem for most until it became a cost issue, in terms of health issues and its related costs? The battle with tobacco wasn’t about making people healthier. It was about keeping health costs down and now Mary Jane is about the revenue and not about liberty. It’s always the money, isn’t it? But then again, we are a capitalistic people, but because of that, we need to be cognizant of the agents of public policy and how they truly impact our lives.

I can say this, if I am seriously harmed, or a family member is seriously harmed, or God forbid, killed due to someone being under the influence of Mary Jane in my life time, like a car accident. That I will remind those political leaders responsible for the legalization of MJ in our state by sending them a note to remind them of the tragedy which befell my family on the anniversary date each year of that tragic event and their responsibility for it happening, in my opinion.

But what do I know? I don’t and never did do drugs. Haven’t drank for 16 years, and I am currently working on my donuts, Diet Coke, and Milk Duds problems.

Peace. 😉

#5 D@ily Spin on 10.05.20 at 9:58 am

Farming and sales tax associated with pot is commerce SD has not deployed. Other states used this product to pay off debt. Sioux Falls could build more unnecessary indoor recreation. Pot and opium dens could subdue crime and narcissist politicians. Smoke em if you got em.

#6 Former Colorado Resident on 10.05.20 at 12:55 pm

As a former Colorado resident, I say…

Vote ‘NO’ on Constitutional Amendment A.

#7 The Guy From Guernsey on 10.06.20 at 8:01 am

Have to admit I had not pondered as a reason for opposition to Amendment A the position that legalized recreational marijuana will destroy the underground economy of peddling (at the present time) an illegal substance – thereby presenting another way in which “The Man is keeping me down”.
I do see the socio-economic aspect of that, but why do we need to bring race into everything?
If I were to bring forward an argument that most illegal drug sales professionals are members of any racial group, I would be lambasted as a racist.
This argument (removing illegal drug sales as a means of a homie supporting his life, liberty and happiness), albeit in a backhanded fashion, is inferring exactly the same.

#8 The Guy From Guernsey on 10.06.20 at 8:31 am

Nonetheless, I agree that legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes will provide opportunity for those more-well heeled, rather than as an opportunity for single entrepreneurs.
Requirements of license, permit and capital will ensure this. Very similar to any government regulation – increased government regulation simply raises the bar of Barrier To Entry of an industry.
Possesion of adequate capital (human and $) and expertise to navigate the labrynth of regulation is biased toward larger entities.
The Barrier To Entry for growing or selling recreational marijuana will be higher than many imagine. The requirements for medical marijuana even higher.

#9 Mike Lee Zitterich on 10.06.20 at 1:48 pm

IF ALL 50 State Legislatures (the people) vote to make Marijuana legal, it will NOT matter what federal law bans the drug’ for the drug would only be ‘illegal’ in the TERRITORY, and not the republic of 50 States. This means,

YOU as an American Citizen residing within the republic are free to grow, distribute, smoke, or use Marijuana;

You as U.S Citizen residing or partaking in activity in the “TERRITORY” do not have any permission to grow, distribute, smoke, or use Marijuana.

Separating the two jurisdictions is key here;

The TERRITORY of which is the District of Columbia and any of its Foreign Held Territories, Properties, lands – Federal Statutes then govern that territory.

Whereas – any Sovereign States (the republic), the people have the right to do as they do regardless.

The only places that would be illegal to grow, manufacture, distribute, smoke, or use Marijuana would be the following: Washington D.C, National Parks, along Federal Highways and Roads, Federal Court Buildings, Federal Admin Buildings, U.S Military Bases, Foreign Held Territories such as Puerto Rico, Guam, etc; U.S Embassies, Enclaves, or any U.S Citizen partaking in the U.S Federal Tax Subsidy, Credits, and Benefit Programs.

Learn the difference in Jurisdiction between the REPUBLIC of 50 States vs the TERRITORY.

State Statutes = State Territory
Federal Statutes = Federal Territory

Federal Statutes only trump state statutes where the “two” Jurisdictions commonly over lap. And that happens to be in the whelm of “Foreign Commerce”.

Mike Zitterich

#10 "Very Stable Genius" on 10.06.20 at 6:52 pm


The war on drugs was a racist concept. It was really meant to control and detain people of color. Even John. Ehrlichman has admitted that.

It’s our drug policies, as we speak, that bring race into this debate.

The only legitimate argument in my opinion for the legalization of any illegal drug is to free people of color of their imprisonment for non violent crimes due to drugs and to re-empower them in terms of their electoral relevance with their new found freedom.

However, I question if this new found freedom will be met with an equal commitment by our predominantly white political leadership in this country to also offer a sustaining hope and future for those currently imprisoned due to illicit drug involvement regardless of the color of their skin.

Hence, the reason I mentioned tax reform above, because as long as we do not address that problem no true new empowerment can be realized for any poor Americans, or South Dakotans, regardless of color as they potentially lose a part of their current economy through the legalization of drugs, or a given drug.

#11 John Dale on 10.10.20 at 9:35 pm

Very solid common ground from my neck of the woods. #legalize