Oct 202012
 October 20, 2012

colorado green rush 60 minutes medical cannabisThe Thriving Medical Cannabis Business That’s Legal In-State, But Illegal Under Federal Law

I received the following submission from the Executive Director of ’60 Minutes’. I like the timeliness of this episode, considering the election is just around the corner. FYI – I e-mailed the Executive Director to ask him to quit using the term ‘medical pot’ which was found in the original subtitle and changed to ‘medical cannabis’:

Colorado’s thriving medical marijuana business isn’t just named for the color of today’s green, potent pot.  It’s the color of the money being made in the medical marijuana industry. Steve Kroft goes to the Rocky Mountain state to report on a business that’s legal there and 16 other states, but in the eyes of the federal government is still as illegal as dealers selling heroin or LSD.  “Rocky Mountain High” will be broadcast on 60 MINUTES Sunday, Oct. 21 (7:30-8:30 PM, ET/7:00-8:00 PM, PT) on the CBS Television Network.

Kroft goes to Denver to visit a few of the city’s 204 medical marijuana dispensaries — shops so numerous, they outnumber Starbucks and McDonalds combined by nearly threefold. The state of Colorado, with five million people, boasts a total of 537 medical pot dispensaries and more than 100,000 authorized medical marijuana patients.   http://tinyurl.com/9lroydm

Highly regulated shops sell medicine patients can smoke with names like Jack Frost and Biodiesel; edible versions of cannabis are also available, from the newfangled, like ice-cream, sparkling sodas and chocolate, to old standbys like cookies and brownies. A Webcast to go live on Sunday evening on 60MinutesOvertime.com will feature a whole segment on the various kinds of marijuana-infused edible products Kroft found.

The rush, like those for silver or gold so long ago, is attracting investors, or as some call them, “ganjapreneurs.”   Kristi Kelly came to Colorado to make money on marijuana. “There’s not a lot of opportunities in any one lifetime where you can be part of something from such an early stage,” she tells Kroft.

The federal government has done little in the state to interfere in the booming trade. And even if it chose to, the sheer number of dispensaries would present a daunting challenge. The Justice Department, however, has warned that financial institutions could be prosecuted for handling money from such businesses. This is a situation ganjapreneurs cannot tolerate  much longer as their businesses grow larger.   This past week, a federal appeals court in Washington held a hearing on whether to change marijuana’s status under the Controlled Substances Act. Medical marijuana advocates are suing to remove cannabis from the Schedule One list and reclassify it as a drug that could be prescribed by physicians.

Meanwhile, Colorado could become the first state to legalize pot. A referendum is on next month’s ballot that if passed, would legalize recreational use of marijuana with regulations.

About Johnny Green

Johnny Green is a marijuana activist from Oregon. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Public Policy. Follow Johnny Green on Facebook and Twitter. Also, feel free to email any concerns.
  • johhny1

    YEP! California not so lucky .Prohibitionist in San Diego, LA are attacking the cannabis industry. N0 Cal growers under attack , legal prop 215 gardens ,
    Oaklands Oakserdam U to Harborside are under Fed litigation
    Not a good time for Medical cannabis patients who inevitably suffer the most .
    While more jurys across America are” refusing to convict” cannabis suppliers , there are too many prosecutors ,LEO who will not acknowledge Medical MJ
    regardless of the Voters continuing support to end Jim Crow laws and cannabis prohibition or drug prohibition in general.
    While thousands of people all across the nation are running a legitimate cannabis industry ,The Federal government still thinks they can “put the genie back in the bottle” good luck with that!
    The “Drug War ” Has been such a success , its not like you can buy crack cocaine in 90% of any city in the US.
    Last time I looked , the arrests for DUI on Alcohol were almost equal to minor drug posessions, Hows that Drug War going?
    My nephew in Georgia was arrested and jailed for 1 fucking stem
    His brother went to jail for 3 joints! than he got probation!
    These kids are not criminals my sister moved from NYC so they could live in a suburb!
    Ending cannabis prohibition cant happen soon enough!