And you thought the fat lady had already sung

NEMiss.News Bullying City Hall



Phone calls and texts to New Albany aldermen and mayor put the already lousy local cell service under terrific stress during recent days.

By a three-to-two vote last Tuesday, August 2, the New Albany Board of Aldermen voted to allow medical marijuana to be produced and sold within the city limits. The vote came at the end of a two-hour public hearing, during which those for and against medical cannabis stated their opinions.

Many who had followed the four-year debate on the subject let out a sigh of relief.

The people of New Albany had voted their approval of medical marijuana almost two years ago. The city board had just approved an ordinance to make it legal immediately.

Done deal? Guess again!

Immediately after the board voted Tuesday night the vocal opponents of medical marijuana escalated their attack. It started getting heated right there in the auditorium of  the Magnolia Civic Center. There were verbal challenges shouted at aldermen who voted in favor of medical cannabis and threats of ‘throwing the rascals out’ at the next election (some of these threats from folks not even qualified to vote in New Albany elections). A majority of those in the auditorium seemed to be anti-marijuana. The buzz in the lobby and out on Bankhead Street as people left the civic center was combative.

Starting that same Tuesday evening and continuing through the weekend, the three aldermen who voted in favor of medical marijuana and Mayor Tim Kent have experienced intense pressure from people seeking to reverse the board’s decision.

There have been rumors that one or more of the aldermen would “rescind” his favorable vote. Many have pressured the mayor to veto the actions of the board majority.

Will one of the aldermen try to change his vote? It’s hard to imagine.

Will Mayor Kent veto the board’s vote in favor of allowing medical marijuana in New Albany? Kent has supported allowing medical marijuana in New Albany until now. Ken Newburger, executive director of the Mississippi Medical Marijuana Association, spoke at last Tuesday’s hearing at the mayor’s invitation.

The mayor’s a bright guy, a savvy politician. The three aldermen who voted to “opt in” are well educated people who studied the issue long and carefully before voting.

The mayor and aldermen are all keenly aware of this long-established political maxim: politicians who reverse their positions, bowing to pressure from those who disagree with them, often face dreadful consequences.

Bowing to pressure, once a position has been taken, is usually a sign of political weakness. Those who supported the politician’s original position will be disappointed and angered. Those who have pressured a politician to reverse his position almost never treat the politician they have intimidated with respect. Instead, they see him as prey, a timid animal which they have knocked over with a small stick.

Does Tim Kent want to make himself a lame duck for the remaining two years and ten months of his fifth term as mayor? Do any of the aldermen want to anger those who supported their original favorable vote? Again, hard to imagine.

The fat lady has, in fact, sung her song. Will she waddle back on the stage and change her tune?

The link below is to a video of the full marijuana hearing last week at the civic center. It was produced by and is courtesy of Kenny S Studio.



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NEMiss.NEWS is a locally owned and operated online news magazine containing news, information, opinion, etc. of interest to residents of Northeast Mississippi. NEMiss.NEWS was founded in 2014 and is a division of Shivimage, LLC, and began publishing in early 2015. read more>>

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