Don’t know how I missed this last year:

“Alabama scores as #21 on overall freedom and does much better on economic than personal freedom, as one might expect from a highly socially conservative state. Nevertheless, Alabama does well on some personal freedoms, such as smoking bans, cigarette taxes and gun control. Alabama has a strangely restrictive alcohol regime, with the second-highest beer taxes and highest spirits taxes in the country. Alabama’s marijuana laws are unusually punitive: A three-year mandatory minimum sentence exists for all marijuana cultivation or sale convictions, by far the highest in the country, and the maximum sentence for a single cultivation or sale conviction is life in prison. Alabama’s court system is one of the worst in the country according to the Chamber of Commerce survey. Moving from elected to appointed judges should help in this regard.”

Page 25, 2009 Freedom in the 50 States: An Index of Personal and Economic Freedom (.pdf) from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.


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