Dear Editor,

Dear Editor,

Jackson City Councilman De’Keither Stamps has introduced a city ordinance that would decriminalize personal possession of small amounts of marijuana. I support this ordinance for two reasons. First, it recognizes that JPD has limited financial and personnel resources, and that those resources should be targeted to people who commit serious and violent crimes.  Second, it recognizes that criminal charges and jail are the wrong approach to a personal choice where no harm has been done to anyone else. Possessing and smoking marijuana are personal choices, not acts of aggression. There is no victim.  If we want safe communities, we should focus the limited resources in our criminal justice system to protect the innocent victims of crime where harm is done, such as robbery, murder, rape, and domestic violence. The criminal justice system should be spending all of their resources here, making our communities safer.  Decriminalizing marijuana doesn’t decriminalize acts of aggression. Robbery is still illegal whether you’re high or not. This amendment wouldn’t change our laws against aggression at all. It would only acknowledge that jail is the wrong approach, and free up our law enforcement for the important work of community safety. This amendment is good policy that would reduce harm to those who choose to smoke marijuana as well as those who don’t. Let’s get the criminal justice system out of policing choices, and focused on policing aggression. This amendment benefits everyone.

Christina Dent

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Evelyn Sanders Forkin, 86, died on Tuesday, December 10, 2019.

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1. He drove a blue ‘77 Chevy Nova in high school. 2. He played on Jackson Prep’s 1985 and 1986 state championship basketball teams.