Wednesday, 20 June, 2018

KS GOPer Apologizes For Saying Black People's Drug Use Related To 'Genetics'

Marijuana is legal under Colorado law but not federal law a U.S. prohibition that a federal lawmaker contended came from how the KS GOPer Apologizes For Saying Black People's Drug Use Related To 'Genetics'
Faye Gross | 10 January, 2018, 00:32

A state lawmakers in Kansas has apologized for remarks he made during a public meeting in which he implied that African-Americans were more prone to drug abuse than people of other races because of their "character makeup - their genetics and that".

Republican state Rep. Steve Alford previously argued against the legalization of marijuana while speaking at a Garden City hospital Saturday, reports The Washington Post. "One of the reasons why - I hate to say it - is the African-Americans, they were basically users and they responded the worst off to those drugs".

During his speech, Alford claimed marijuana was previously outlawed because black people often reacted poorly to the drugs because of their "character makeup - their genetics and that".

In Alford's apology letter, he said he would continue to fight the spread of addiction in Kansas and that "legalizing marijuana only opens the door to harder drugs".

Alford did not immediately respond to TPM's request for comment.

Meanwhile, according to a report by New York Daily News, Alford in a statement Monday said, "I was wrong, I regret my comments, and I sincerely apologize to anyone whom I have hurt".

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). Basically, I got called a racist, which I'm really not, and it's just the way people - the interpretation of people.

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"It is hard to believe that in 2018, anyone would support the discredited and racist policies of the Jim Crow era", Brewer said, the Topka-Journal reported.

As for Alford, no one addressed his racist comment during the Legislative Coffee gathering.

Republican state Rep. Steve Alford of the western Kansas town of Ulysses stepped down Tuesday as chairman of the House Children and Seniors Committee and vice chairman of a legislative task force on child welfare.

At the event he argued African-Americans were predisposed to react the worst to marijuana and that had played a role in the drug's prohibition in the 1930s.

"We were taken aback by his statements, and disappointed with them and (in) no way (do) they reflect the position of the Kansas House or the policies that we will produce", Ryckman said.

The local newspaper reported no one at the event addressed Alford's comments, and later asked him to clarify his remarks.

"Basically, the question of marijuana was coming up, and basically, what I'm really saying is that I'm against marijuana because it's an entry drug into everything else", he said to the Capital-Journal. "I'm about as far from being a racist as I could get".

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