Marijuana legalization has been a decades-long battle that is finally paying off, with states all over the country legalizing medical and/or recreational cannabis. But in addition to fighting for your rights on the legal front, our experienced lawyers know there is another fight that must be won: the battle of public perception.
Nowhere is that struggle better illustrated than in Texas, where a college baseball coach blew off an athlete interested in attending the school over the issue of marijuana. You might be wondering what the connection is. Did the student fail a drug test? Did he have a criminal record involving marijuana? Had he been penalized by his high school for coming to school under the influence?
All of these would be excellent guesses. But the answer to all three is “no.” According to an email to the athlete, which has since gone viral, it appears the coach deemed the student guilty by association of the entire state of Colorado, according to a report from The Washington Post.
The email claimed the school was not considering students from Colorado because in the past, recruits from the state had difficulty passing the drug test. “We have made a decision not to take a chance on student-athletes from your state. You can thank your liberal politicians,” the message went on to say.
This of course is a gross misrepresentation of the Colorado cannabis laws. Amendment 64 was adopted by the voters of Colorado, not liberal politicians, as part of a ballot initiative in 2012. In fact, Colorado Sens. Cory Gardner (R) and Michael Bennet (D) are putting party aside and leading a bipartisan group of senators to protect state marijuana laws at the federal level, according to The Cannabist. The amendment also outlines that marijuana use is only for adults 21 years of age or older, meaning it would not be legal for most students applying to college to use the drug.
While our Orange County marijuana legalization lawyers think marijuana use is hardly of concern to athletic programs, we understand why a coach would have to follow the rules of their college and state when considering athletes, especially if they were using the drug underage illegally. But to turn them away without so much as a drug test simply because they live in a state that understands the medical and economic benefits of cannabis is not only absurd … it is abhorrent.
Luckily, the college, which is a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletes, agreed. The coach of 16 years was fired. The school president cited the “discriminatory remarks” from the email to the Colorado recruit as well as another issue relating to an NAIA violation (which he did not elaborate on) as the cause of the termination.
We applaud the school for taking quick and decisive action against the coach. But we also know this incident is a reflection of some dark remnants of the shady “War on Drugs” that has had its grip on this country for far too long. If you have faced this kind of discrimination over California’s marijuana laws, our trusted attorneys are here to help guide you to the best solution for your case.
The Los Angeles CANNABIS LAW Group represents growers, dispensaries, collectives, patients, defendants, workers and those facing criminal marijuana charges. Call us at 714-937-2050.
Texas College Fires Baseball Coach Who Just Said No to Colorado Recruit Over States Marijuana Laws, March 1, 201, By Matt Bonesteel, The Washington Post
More Blog Entries:
Former College Athlete Urges NCAA to Remove Pot from Banned Substance List, Sept. 23, 2016, By Marijuana Legalization Lawyers Blog