Marijuana Law in Hands of Voters
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Marijuana Law in Hands of Voters
Posted by CN Staff on September 29, 2010 at 05:06:59 PT
Source: Metrowest Daily News
Massachusetts -- Next month, California voters will consider the biggest change in drug policy since Congress made marijuana possession a criminal offense in 1937.Proposition 19, if passed, will not just legalize marijuana possession, it will empower municipalities to regulate and tax it. The state Legislature won't be able to stop it. Any community looking to avoid a property tax hike could open up its own cannabis revenue stream.
Marijuana would still be against federal law, which would put the Obama administration in a quandary: Should they send an army of federal agents to enforce a law state and local police won't, or turn their backs and let Californians choose their own intoxicants?That conflict is not without precedent. Back in the 1920s, New York gave up on Prohibition before the rest of the country. While manufacturing and distribution of alcohol remained against federal law, it was legal under New York law. The feds mostly looked the other way and New Yorkers kept drinking, which is one reason the Prohibition-era crime wars were waged in Chicago and not New York.Proposition 19 is no sure thing in California. Its opponents include the usual - establishment politicians, law enforcement and some religious groups - and the unexpected. Some entrepreneurs who have profited from the state's medical marijuana industry oppose it, and major funding for the opposition campaign is coming from California beer and liquor distributors.Meanwhile, some Massachusetts voters will have their own say on the Bay State's marijuana policy. Question 5 on the Nov. 2 ballot in Wayland, Sudbury and Lincoln will ask voters' opinions on whether the Legislature should consider legalizing and regulating marijuana like it now regulates liquor.Similar questions will face voters in several other state House and Senate districts across the state, including Wellesley, Hudson, Stow, Newton, Maynard and Medfield. Voters in other districts will be asked to weigh in on legalizing medical marijuana.Those questions are all non-binding, of course, and if past history holds, even the legislators in those districts will ignore the results. The Massachusetts Legislature has for many years refused to even discuss marijuana policy. Two years ago, voters took the issue out of the Legislature's hands, approving the decriminalizing of marijuana. Question 2 passed with 65 percent of the vote.If California leads the way, we wouldn't be surprised to see a binding legalization measure on the Massachusetts ballot in 2012.Source: Metrowest Daily News (MA)Published: September 29, 2010Copyright: 2010 MetroWest Daily NewsContact: mdnletters cnc.comURL: -- Cannabis Archives
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Comment #1 posted by The GCW on September 29, 2010 at 06:44:36 PT
Line up
The vision of lots of old ex-cops and corrections officers standing in welfare lines warms my cold heart. US CA: OPED: Redefine Cannabis Reality
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