New Laws in Virginia

As of today, July 1st, some new laws are in place in Virginia. I agree with most of them.

First, the death penalty has gone away. It was always a crazy law. If you sentence someone to death, they should be taken out back and dispatched. If you sentence them to death and they just go sit in a cell for twenty years thinking about the fact that they are scheduled to die, that just seemed cruel. Unconstitutional. In general, I can’t say that I agree with putting anyone to death regardless of what they did but the cost to keep someone locked up for decades or ’til the end of their life is a lot of money. That is a burden on society. Not an easy issue.

It is now legal to own up to an ounce of marijuana in a personal residence. I haven’t read the law but hopefully it addresses the strong likelihood that a resident will share said marijuana with friends and/ family. If that would be considered distribution or some kind of dealership, I can see how that would be an issue. The federal government still considered marijuana illegal, so residents should be careful in areas that could be considered federal property.

Drivers of cars will need to change lanes if a biker is in the lane, if there isn’t at least three feet of room. That law will definitely save lives, if people follow it. There is a similar law requiring drivers to change lanes when someone is on the side of the road. That law is seldom followed, from what I’ve seen. It is difficult to enforce unless there happens to be a second officer nearby or some kind of camera that can capture the violation.

Body cameras will be required on officers in Maryland. Officers will need to have a backup charged camera. Why this wasn’t a law years ago, I don’t know. I’m confident the cameras will help keep officers in line. Surely, people opposed to funding of police will now calm down a bit.

Some other laws went into affect but I really don’t have an interest in chatting about them.

I am keeping an eye on Biden’s proposed tax changes and I’ll continue to work with lawmakers on possibly changing the family laws in place in Maryland.

Gary

I grew up in Baltimore and currently live in the Rodgers Forge community just north of Baltimore City.

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