Republican Rep. Steve Alford doesn't think marijuana should be legalized in Alabama.
Because of black people.
The Kansas state lawmaker recently stated African Americans had the worst response to the drug because of their “character makeup, their genetics." Therefore, cannabis should not be legal in the state.
The (clearly) racist comments were caught on tape (check out the video above.)
Alford started off his argument by asking his audience to "go back in the '30s," which, in essence, is never a good era to cite when discussing domestic laws.
"What you really need to do is go back in the ’30s, when they outlawed all types of drugs in Kansas [and] across the United States,” Alford said, according to the Garden City Telegram. “One of the reasons why, I hate to say it, was that the African Americans, they were basically users and they basically responded the worst off to those drugs just because of their character makeup, their genetics and that.”
Obviously, the racist comments set off a scorching round of criticism. And only after people called him out did Alford tried to apologize. However, he miserably failed at it since he categorically refused to acknowledge his remarks were racist.
Kansas City Star reports Alford blamed an advocate for marijuana legalization at the event for bringing the "whole thing up."
"They’re the one that brought the racial part in,” he said. After repeated questions, he said: “And he came up and told me I’m a racist. I’m about as far from being a racist as I can get.”
"To me, that’s neutral," Alford continued. "Basically, I got called a racist, which I’m really not, and it’s just the way people — the interpretation of people. To me, I’m trying to look at what’s really the best for Kansas.”
So, while Alford wants people to know he not a racist, he still believes saying black people can't handle the effects of pot due to their genetics is "neutral" or, in other words, OK.
FYI, Mr. Alford: It's not.
Banner: REUTERS/Nick Adams