Monday, November 12, 2012

What Legal Weed Means For America

If your like us here at Geeked Out, you love to smoke weed. If you're also like us you wished you lived in Colorado or Washington right about now. On November 6th Colorado and Washington passed historic measures to legalize recreational marijuana usage. This has huge implication not only for weed smokers but for all Americans. The American economy has been reeling since the 2008 housing market collapse, one of the main arguments for legalized weed has been tax revenue. Not only could this be a boon for the two states but could also lead to increases in tourism for the two states from weed smokers who would like to do so legally, much like Amsterdam whose economy thrives on such tourism. The reduction of non-violent marijuana related incarcerations could also lead to major savings for these states.

 If the new Marijuana regulations do lead to state budget surpluses these laws could have a massive rippling effect and spread to other states, that is if The Federal Government does not seek to thwart the effort. Marijuana is still regarded as a schedule 1 drug by the Federal Government, which is legal jargon which claims Marijuana has no medical viability what so ever. It is within the power of the Executive Branch, i.e. the President, to remove such a label but many point to the Federal Governments crack down of dispensaries in California. Washington's I-502 and Colorado's Amendment 64 leave huge loop holes which could lead to huge problems with Federal and State regulation. Washington's I-502 also opens up DUI laws for driving under the influence and only actually decriminalizes under an ounce, so legally you could still come under major fire for selling it. Colorado's law seems a little more thought out and seeks to integrate the sale of marijuana with Colorado's already thriving dispensaries. I think these laws though imperfect are a step in the right direction. The drug war has been an epic failure and even if the Federal Government does step in a majority of American's support legalization so if the Fed's do choose to fight it it will be a long uphill battle for them.
What Legal Weed Means For America

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