Clear the bong water, man

Possession of bong water can now turn your misdemeanor into a felony.

Last Thursday, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that bong water is, under law, âÄúa preparation, compound, mixture, or substance containing a controlled substance, regardless of purity.âÄù Before that 4-3 decision, bong water was included with the bong as paraphernalia, at least as lower courts interpreted the legislature. Now, having 25 or more grams of dirty water âÄî roughly 2.5 tablespoons âÄî can land you a first-degree drug conviction and the potential for serious prison time, as opposed to a fine of no more than $300 for paraphernalia. The ruling sent Sara Peck of Faribault back into the district courts for re-trial, after her bong water was found to include traces of methamphetamine back in 2007. Given recent progressivism in other states on drug possession rulings, this is a huge step backwards for Minnesota. However, not all of the high court failed to see the faulty logic behind this decision. Dissenting Justice Paul Anderson wrote: âÄúRice CountyâÄôs decision to charge Peck in a manner far more serious than what was intended by the legislature represents the kind of counterproductive activity that leads unnecessarily to increasing incarceration rates and wasted taxpayer money.âÄù Five years ago, Minnesota had 152,300 adults under correctional supervision, 25 percent higher than the national average for prison, jail, probation and parole. This decision will only aggravate that number. If we want to start attacking our stateâÄôs massive budget deficit, get on your legislators to review this debased drug legislation. Until then, throw out the bong water, man.