Published: Thu, January 11, 2018
Global | By Shelia Dennis

Kansas lawmaker apologizes for remarks about black people

Kansas lawmaker apologizes for remarks about black people

On Tuesday, he resigned from two chairmanships, House Committee on Children and Seniors, and (vice-chair) of Child Welfare System Task Force.

Rep. Alford made the comments during a voters forum in Garden City.

While commenting against marijuana use, Alford had cited the historic record for why so many drugs, including cannabis, were outlawed in the U.S. in the '30's.

"I think that's totally inappropriate for a state official to say that sort of things it's also revisionist history", said Democratic Senator Lynn Rogers.

Alford later apologized for the comments in a statement, according to the Hutchinson News, after facing major backlash from Republicans and Democrats.

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"I don't want to respond to Representative Alford's comments directly", said Republican Representative Chuck Weber.

While some research suggests that marijuana precedes other drug use, the National Institute on Drug Abuse has found that a majority of marijuana users do not move on to harder drugs.

At the meeting, Alford argued against legalizing any use of marijuana.

A Kansas state representative is apologizing after implying that black people have "genetics" and "character makeup" that make them prone to be addicted to drugs - while discussing his support for the prohibition of marijuana.

State Rep. Steve Alford (R) spoke out on Saturday against legalizing pot using the type of racist "logic" commonly heard when "Reefer Madness" was considered a serious documentary.

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According to the Garden City Telegram, Alford was referring to Harry Anslinger's tenure as the founding commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics (FBN).

Kansas is one of the few remaining states that haven't legalized some form of medical marijuana, including low-THC marijuana derivatives that can't get a user high.

Although Alford, who represents a district in western Kansas, stood by his remarks when questioned after the meeting, he was unable to cite a specific source for his so-called science to the Telegram.

"Under Anslinger's leadership, the FBN came to be considered responsible for the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937", the report noted, "regulating cannabis and further taxing it to the ultimate detriment of the hemp industry that was booming at the time".

"What was the reason why they did that?" he continued.

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I am aware that this issue has occupied the attention of the public for some time and deserves to be addressed urgently, the note says.

Alford said black people were "users" and responded worst to marijuana due to their "character makeup" and genetics. It's because of their character makeup - their genetics and that. "And so basically, what we are trying to do is we're trying to do a complete reverse with people not remembering what has happened in the past". Now it appears Kansas state Rep. Steve Alford is taking a page out of his book.

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