Kansas lawmaker apologizes for remarks about black people

Marijuana is legal under Colorado law but not federal law a U.S. prohibition that a federal lawmaker contended came from how the

Kansas lawmaker apologizes for remarks about black people

Alford's comments echoed some of Aslinger.

According to a report by The Garden City Telegram, the comment was made Saturday during a legislative coffee session at St. Catherine Hospital, Kansas.

Asked about his remarks Monday by The Associated Press, before his apology, Alford said: "I'm not going make any more remarks about that".

"I majored in pre-med and biology myself and nowhere in my genetic studies did it say that African-Americans had a gene that predisposed them to be, to have bad character", he said. "I was wrong, I regret my comments, and I sincerely apologize to anyone whom I have hurt".

Burks isn't the only one sharing disapproval of Alford's comments. When a local Democrat argued green lighting marijuana could be a good financial move for Kansas, Alford referred to the racist logic of Harry Anslinger that fueled the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937.

"It is hard to believe that in 2018, anyone would support the discredited and racist policies of the Jim Crow-era", Brewer said in a statement to KSN TV.

Alford was first elected to the House in 2010 and is chairman of its Children and Seniors Committee as well as a legislative task force on child welfare issues.

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Alford could face discipline for his comments from the House Republican leadership, but the state's Speaker of the House Republican Ron Ryckman, said it was too early to tell what punishment might be appropriate for Alford.

Ryckman said GOP leaders would consult with other lawmakers and their staff on how to respond.

Although Alford, who represents a district in western Kansas, stood by his remarks when questioned after the meeting, he was unable to cite a specific source for his so-called science to the Telegram. It starts out as merely absurd, with Alford saying that his freedom to breathe clean air is enough to justify a regulatory scheme that sends people to jail for decades. "I have seen firsthand how drug abuse destroys lives, even within my own family, and I remain committed to fighting the spread of addiction in our state".

"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. He claimed they did not have to do with race, but he declined to elaborate on what information he thought people should know.

That's when Alford drifted into the remarks suggesting somehow that race and the reaction to marijuana are connected, a notion far removed from any science but one that Alford suggested triggered anti-marijuana laws in the 1930s.

He said an advocate for marijuana legalization at the event "really kind of brought the whole thing up."
That prompted Alford to tell him to look at the 1930s history.

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