Legal medical cannabis and legal recreational cannabis in Washington state are merging into one industry. Here’s an excerpt from an excellent article which traces this pedigree of this change. Enjoy:
But there were problems. Police kept arresting some patients and growers, in part because of the ambiguity in I-692 about how much cannabis patients could possess. The law itself allowed for a “60-day supply,” which depending on the user could mean anything from a few grams to several ounces or more. Another complication arose because I-692 didn’t say anything about where MMJ patients could get their medicine, other than that a “designated caregiver” could assist them. According to High Times, this led to the proliferation of dispensaries where patients would come in, sign a form declaring one of the dispensary workers their designated caregiver, buy their pot (or rather, receive their pot free and then make a “donation” to the dispensary, so that neither was breaking federal law by buying or selling a controlled substance), and then in their next breath sign another note revoking the dispensary worker’s status as their designated caregiver. The next patient in line would step up to the counter, sign a note, etc. “This plainly illegal operation of dispensaries led to some raids and much anger from the medical activist community,”
. . .
During their campaign, proponents of recreational legalization emphasized that I-502 “does not change the Washington State Medical Use of Cannabis Act,” in the words of their campaign website. And that was true: I-502 made no mention of medical marijuana. On the other hand, once I-502 passed, anytime pot was sold outside of an I-502 store, the state coffers would forgo precious tax revenue. And don’t forget the feds, whose potential raids hung over the heads of state leaders like the sword of Damocles. In short, once Washington had a well-defined, heavily regulated recreational-marijuana market, it was only a matter of time before state legislators decided to fold existing MMJ dispensaries—not quite legal, and barely regulated—into I-502.
Voters didn’t seem to mind. I-502 passed in Washington state by an 11 percent margin, and the party began.
Here’s a read worth your time. Find the complete, original post HERE.
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