Seventy-five law professors signed an open letter to California voters that says they’re in favor of Proposition 19.
The California proposition, a ballot motion for of-age adults that would make it legal to grow and use cannabis for recreational purposes, would also allow local governments to monitor and regulate the usage of marijuana.
“We write this open letter to encourage a wholesale rethinking of marijuana policy in this country,” the professors wrote. “We find the present policies toward marijuana to be bankrupt, and urge their rethinking.”
The open letter affirms that enforcement of marijuana laws “is often a thinly veiled means of promoting structural racism.” Additionally, the letter argues, that the current marijuana laws are “wasteful and ineffective,” and that legalizing the drug would reduce the present black market.
The letter continues to argue that the legalization of the drug would let law enforcers spend more time and resources on decreasing more serious crimes.
Even with such prominent signatures, there is still great doubt that the proposition will pass. Steve Berenson, a law professor that signed the letter, said to Annenberg Digital News that his “guess is that [prop 19] will be narrowly defeated.”
On Nov. 2, California voters will get to decide which side they are in favor of at the voting booth. And if it passes, the proposition will become law on Nov. 3.