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Opinion: A Washington Prohibitionist Perspective

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washington state marijuanaI realize we can’t all get a bong, but at least we can agree to disagree without name calling. Not everyone feels the way I do about I-502 here at The Weed Blog (in fact I’m the only one), but the guys here are still my friends and the next opportunity I have to smoke with them again, I will. Instead of the olive branch I offer you the pot leaf.

Election time is nearing and people are starting to believe the bullshit thrown their way via the political machine, yours truly included as I will cast my vote for Gary Johnson but the bigger picture are the local ones.

Several states have some form of marijuana legalization on their ballots and I wonder if there’s as much debate in each one like there is in mine, the State of Washington. I can only imagine this is the same thing that brought down Prop. 19 in California which seemed like a no brainer for that state from someone living out of state. Since I-502 has been making headlines I’m realizing more and more that Prop.19 didn’t fail because people don’t believe in weed but because they didn’t believe the law is right.

There are many red flags as why I oppose this law, the biggest that big money is involved in the funding for the law. This might sound petty but I’m taught to question everything that involves big money. There are bigger special interest involved here and special interest work out so well for the everyday common people (sarcasm intended). I know a lot of you are going to spit bile and vinegar at me but honestly I can’t side with anything that could potentially diminish the quality of herb I get.

Cannabis, marijuana, herb is religion to me and one wouldn’t spit in the eye of God.  Instead we should cater and love it, embracing it to greatness. There is more positive science behind marijuana than there is not, you can’t hide truth which is why the good fight must always go on. Putting this thing that I and so many have respect for in control of the state sits wrong with me, if you’ve lived in Washington and have ever tried to get a bottle of (state your liquor) know what I mean.

First you have to find a state run store; these stores aren’t as predominant as you think they are or should be. The business is isolated to numbers of licenses in the given area. One can’t just walk into any grocery and pick up a six pack at the same location. They will be isolated stores control and licensed by only the state. The product will no longer matter, it’s simply a matter or licensing any a-hole will run a store. As I write this I guess I realize I’m being sort of a weed elitist but that’s my right as a cannabis connoisseur. The government does so well with all their other regulation why not put marijuana in the mix (sarcasm intended).

I think one thing as a consumer we can ask ourselves is “what’s this all about?” It’s about a plant, the natural and organic before profits and controls. It’s about a beautiful plant called many things but all meaning the same thing, a beautiful green plant that produces a wonderful fruit known as buds.

Did you know TLC was originally owned by NASA and United States Department of Health and Human Services? Now we get Honey Boo Boo. Or why do I look for labels that say organic as often as I can and or afford, healthy living is not cheap now we  live a by-product red dot number five world and wonder why unhealthy health rates increase. I don’t ever want to think “Remember when weed was organic?

Many activist and dispensary owners here in Washington State are against I-502 for the 5 n/g clause. Granted it is a bad clause but simply put “don’t get in trouble”. Even though I don’t understand why there does have to be some sort of course of punishment for cannabis users. The plant really isn’t free or legal if there needs to be a punishment for anything quantity found on a person.

The state will be able to place regulation on cannabis using local law enforcement as its arms. Now it’s not just the feds you have to worry but your neighbor to, anything involving regulation and tax dollars for enforcement on a medicinal sacrament is wrong.

Monsanto started off as a good idea and now future children will have to. We all stand for cannabis and for different reason; some of us are converts that have found cannabis to be a better medicine than 20 pills a day, others are long time smokers that know the truth and want only common sense to prevail in our world, the truth being cannabis is safer than booze, cigarettes, and all Monsanto grown products.

Advocates for I-502 contend that we’ll be allowed to transport “x” amount of cannabis which granted is a huge leap and bound but what good is the amount if the quality is not there? Anything involving profits for the state in an ingenious form of legalization is still illegalization. Why settle for the milk when you can have the cow? Washigton State is a medicinal state and a quite successful one at that – that has to tell you something from the activist legalization perspective.

If revenue is the issue I suggest this for Washington. Lower the price. Lower the price of the yearly evaluations and more people will sign up, increasing your populace revenue. The more licenses required the more dispensaries are required than the more business license are required, these types of scenarios are win win.

I write this not to try and sway opinions but to plead to all smokers to try and keep it civil. Since the beginning of this political process any smoker against I-502 has been labeled a prohibitionist by local indie rag editor Domonic Holden and a pro-marijuana site know as www.nwbud.com.

A recent article on www.nwbud.com shows pictures plastered around Washington with well known marijuana activist Vivian McPeak, Steve Elliot and others stating they’re against legalization. In reaction to the article Vivian McPeak posted this response recently on his Facebook page “”In a childish and pathetic attempt to publicly intimidate and humiliate myself and others intro voting a certain way these faceless cowards are advancing a humiliation campaign in support of I-502. Well, first off, nobody knows how I am going to vote in the sacred privacy of a polling booth. I reserve to change my opinion either way at the last minute. There is NOTHING more patently un-American than publicly harassing someone based upon their (perceived) vote! These people are doing a great dis-service to the good folks at New Approach Washington, and they are actually hurting the initiative effort by publicly announcing opposition, and by resorting to such clear gutter tactics. I challenge them to reveal their cowardly selves. I dare them to man up and put their faces and names behind their statements, but I doubt they will because only cowards act like that. I have no made a public statement about I-502 for many months. How dare they attempt to speak for me now! Everyone deserves the right to vote unfettered by public intimidation and humiliation tactics. I was born in the United States of America, and she ain’t perfect but I love her and I know unAmericanism when I sees it. These people don’t know jack about democracy.”

Whether I-502 passes or not: it will not affect my smoking habits unless quality really does go down the drain but I will not consider it real legalization when one can still get fired or when it can and will affect a custody battle between bitter parents. Despite what you think the weed still will not be free.

When it’s time to vote I will be voting for Gary Johnson for President and no on I-502. Both sides of I-502 are very passionate but the name calling is really tearing at the thread of who we are and that’s pro-marijuana. We just don’t see eye to eye on how to get there or what version of legalization we are willing to accept. Think of it this way, if you rescued a bird with a broken wing would you release it back into the wild or to an aviary once its healed. Just because the cage is bigger doesn’t mean its free.

Remember when The Learning Channel was about learning or when food was organic? I can and would hate to say the same about my weed. In the end I hope we can all just get a bong.

 

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  • Sean

    Sadly, much of the mj community is messed up. You have a large cross section of stoners, dealers, medical mj users and providers, growers and wannabe rebel rock stars who don’t want any type of legalization or reform. It’s like people going to jail for weed means nothing to them. I have no patience with stoners who think they are too cool for legalization. They remind me of the Bantustan leaders in apartheid era South Africa who collaborated with the apartheid regime. Please don’t lecture me with this “Can’t we all get along” kumbayah foolishness. I don’t break bread with those who collaborate with the oppressor. Legalize or put the bong down!

    • I feel ya’ but to legalize I wish the plant could be free. Instead we’re talking of commercial grade marijuana that will be regulated by the state. Hell they may even limit types of strains. I’m just saying that legalize to me, means everyone is on a even playing field.

      • You seem to have an honest perspective, so you should remember this.
        Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

        Despite what some may have told you, I-502 doesn’t take anything away from anyone. Medical marijuana patients retain all the rights they already have. I-502 only improves things.

        The only reason for the STRONG opposition to I-502 with “marijuana circles” is that greedy growers, et al, will not be able to keep their quasi-monopolies and outrageous prices. After re-legalization, average quality marijuana will sell for around $50 an ounce, plus taxes.

        I’m glad you support Gary Johnson. You should talk with him about I-502. He, and 95 percent of marijuana reform leadership, firmly encourage a YES vote.

        • My main concern is that this will be a monopoly for the state. Prior to this it was all alcohol controlled by the state and reservations.

          • Econ 420

            This is going to “sarich” long, but I think its important.

            The retail stores, processors and growers will all be private.

            The idea that legal sales would somehow result in reduced quality defies literally every facet of economics.

            Its FAR more likely that the result will be a TOTAL elimination of substandard “commercial grade” cannabis from the market.

            Let me explain why.

            Today, as any cannabis smoker or vaper knows, there are is a broad continuum of quality, for the purposes of explanation lets think about them like this:

            A – Mexican brick weed. Total garbage. (think: prohibition’s bathtub Gin)

            AA – Low grade outdoor, but un-bricked and at least consumable. (think: diluted rotgut prohibition whiskey)

            +AA – poorly grown indoor, or decent outdoor. Not ideal, but if you live in a place with poor product availability, this is likely most of what is around. (Think: Cheap but properly diluted prohibition whiskey)

            AAA – The start of what is called “Bag Appeal”. Smells pretty good, looks pretty good (little dusty, nicely formed buds). ( Think: Prohibition’s “Medicinal Whiskey”, not great – but good and widely available)

            Prime – Excellent product. Not “magazine weed”, but smells great, is quite dusty, somewhat colorful, and properly manicured. (“The Real McCoy” , unadulterated Canadian Rye, 3-year Scotch and Irish Whiskey)

            Artisanal – The best of the best. Grown without regard to cost. Find the best picture on google of Blackberry Bubba Kush – this is what i mean. (Think: 20 year Islay scotch, XO cognac, and top-end champagne DURING prohibition)

            Under 502’s labeling and testing requirements alone, anything below +AA, and possibly AAA wont even be legal to sell. They simply wont meet health and contaminant requirements.

            Now add real market competition to the mix. If all a consumer has to do is drive a little further to get quality product – why would they settle for less? In their efforts to gain market share and retain customers, growers and retailers WILL improve quality while they lower prices.

            My forecast (based on discussions with people intending to get into the business post 502):

            AAA will be available, but very cheap and hardly a real money maker. I expect prices around $75-85/oz at the retail level, after taxes.

            Prime will be the focus, at least in terms of volume. Consumers demand quality, but not everyone want to pay for the cost-be-damned growing techniques of low yield, long-flowering strains.
            I expect prices of $100-130/oz after taxes.

            Artisanal will be widely available, but will remain somewhat expensive. I expect prices of around 160-200/oz after taxes.

            if 502 passes, no one will ever smoke mids again. This I can promise you.

          • Sounds reasonable. But in the long run, don’t forget Wal-Mart. 8^)

          • Econ 420

            Indeed.

            But they won’t get involved until its legal for them to grow in 500,000 sq.ft. warehouses, and sell self-branded product in their god-awful “super-centers”.

            That’s at least a decade away. I’m a little more concerned about Diageo and the Winston-Salem boys – a legal west coast (CA+OR+WA), and they might test the waters. But really, corporate involvement is hardly a nightmare scenario. Just like beer & wine, cannabis doesn’t really lend itself to low-cost homogenous production. You can drop the price through the floor – a huge chunk of the consuming public still won’t touch your product.

          • jim dandy

            you guys all miss the point if thay’re growing 500000 sq ft. warehouses we won’t smoke weed! here’s the bombshell !we will all be smoking hash. try thinking big. in places where they grow a lot like afg. they would laff at you if you asked for weed, plus the exotics and imported would be back like Columbian Gold .the future is hashish and dabs not really weed i could get used to it happy 420

          • jim dandy

            lol

          • I made this statement in a reply below but the same pertains to a response towards you as well and what I believe “I work in the production industry, knowing what I know I would hate to see marijuana in that realm of corners being cut just for mass production.”

          • Dont Fear the Corps

            I completely understand. Phillip Morris controlling the cannabis market is my personal nightmare.

            But there’s no escaping the realities of consumer demand. We might end up with a few 50,000 Sq.ft. grow-ops, but so what?

            The quality herb you’re afraid you (and me) might lose – it will be more available than ever – and still grown locally, by small-scale high labor operations. Its the miracle of capitalism. We might have a few business which cater to low-end, low-cost tastes by selling bullshit triples – but look at the micro-brews in a WA supermarket, the quality producers will outnumber the corporates 10-to-1.

            Don’t fear the lose of quality product, or even well-paid local producers. 502 is progress for everybody.

          • jim dandy

            phllip morris didnt get to their position by being stupid don’t assume they would let anybody beat their product they don’t grow shitty tobacco and they got money

          • The standard events of ending a prohibition is such that after a decade, 2 or three, “home production’ is allowed for home use. Simply no way to effectively stop it from happenning anyway.
            There are a number of natural plants that can be use to gene splice MJ seeds to higher Chromosome counts. There is no way to eliminate ‘potent strains’. Anyone can create a new and potent variety, in their backyard.
            As far as post MJ(not hemp) prohibition pricing in a “no home growing” paradigm, prices will collapse, because courts would be awash with growers instead of users, catching 10% at best as now.

          • jim dandy

            u r happy payin200 an oz ?you.re crazy? 20 for the good stuff and mids 5 an oz

          • So a monopoly for the state is worse than the continued war on marijuana consumers? Strange priorities, unless you are just another greedy grower.

          • I work in the production industry, knowing what I know I would hate to see marijuana in that realm of corners being cut just for mass production.

          • Like I said – very skewed priorities. First, STOP the war on marijuana consumers. THEN we can look at fine tuning the industry.

            Plus, for better or for worse, we live in a capitalistic (mass production) society. If you want to change it, I’m interested.

            But DON’T dare try to do it on the backs of the suffering of millions of innocent American marijuana consumers!

          • jim dandy

            never happen. too many growers will still exist to provide the good stuff . state run stores will have to compete to rid of the black market

        • DM

          Gary Johnson does not support 502 liar

          • They’re Called Facts

            No friend, you’re the liar.

            And I quote:

            “Washington’s I-502 is fiscally responsible and socially pragmatic. We
            should regulate and tax it like alcohol and tobacco instead of propping
            up black market profiteers. We have better uses for our police,
            courts, and jails.”
            -Gary Johnson

            Google it.

            Pull your head out of wherever you shoved it, and stop standing in the way of ending the war on drugs.

            You’re either an idiot or a fucking asshole.

            Vote YES on I-502

          • As does Jim Gray.

      • jim dandy

        the common sense of it is the black market will provide the good stuff

    • Who are you talking about? I don’t think I have met a single MMJ patient or provider that has not been in favor of legalization. And I have met most of the big names and “rock stars” that you are referring to. They all want to see cannabis removed from the controlled substances list.

      • That includes Steve Sarich, Vivian McPeak, Steve Elliott, Douglas Hiatt, Jeff Steinborn, etc.

        • Those are “big name rock stars?” You need to get out of Seattle more.

          • jim dandy

            lol

        • Get Real

          All of those people oppose 502.

          They don’t want “legalization”, they want a totally unregulated, untaxed, un-policed free-for-all.

          Sounds great – buts its nothing short of a political impossibility.

          And removing cannabis from the controlled substances list is a peripheral matter. Make cannabis available (by passing 502), then work with Olympia – that’s the way to get it done. Waiting for another initiative is a terrible idea.

          You want progress? – vote YES on I-502

          • SteveSarich

            I you don’t actually LEGALIZE it under the state law, you will constantly have the same conflicts with law enforcement agencies. I-502 DOES NOT legalize marijuana in Washington!

            You CAN have legalization AND regulation, but you can’t have legitimate regulations that will protect you from being a criminal, if you don’t legalize it at the same time you pass reasonable regulations. That’s simply not possible under either state or Federal statutes.

            If Washington were to legalize and regulate marijuana here in Washington, which would mean taking marijuana out of RCW 69.50, the state could actually fight off a preemption challenge by the Feds under Title 21, section 903, of the Federal Controlled Substances Act. Washington, like all states, have the right, Federally, to control controlled substances within their state.

            You could actually have you “state licensed pot stores” and you could do it without Federal intervention. But that is NOT what New Approach Washington decided to do. Their complicated scheme could not possible stand up to a Federal challenge…. and the NAW people know that. That’s why, when they are asked if they could defeat a Federal challenge, they sluff off the question and say that “it will be a political decision”. What kind of an answer is that???

            So when the Feds make their “political decision” (and we all know what that decision will be), all we will have left is this bullshit per se DUID law. So this law is far WORSE than nothing at all. All we’ll have is yet another form of prohibition that they can use against us….one we can’t beat in court!

            Vote NO on I-502

            Steve Sarich
            Spokesman
            NO ON I-502

          • Steve,

            If I-502 passes it will take your points out of theory and put them in the open. I believe you are correct. So why not vote for 502 and let the inevitable happen? As a lesson to others. Don’t wait for perfection. Learn by doing.

          • SteveSarich

            I don’t need to get convicted of per se DUID to “learn” what that’s like. That doesn’t have to be “inevitable”…unless I-502 wins in three weeks. I don’t want anyone else to have to learn that lesson the hard way either!

          • Experience is a hard teacher. Some will have no other. I think it is important for people to see how it works in practice. You are one example. Sorry to say but it will take hundreds to make an impression.

            What you should be planning is the NEXT initiative to correct the errors of this one. And to get support there will HAVE to be casualties. Accept that and get on with it. After all it is not as if we are casualty free now. Think like a general.

          • jim dandy

            rite on brother

          • jim dandy

            parent =fail

          • It is not a political impossibility. It is what we have now. I’d prefer what we have now without the arrests. But I’ll take second best if that is what I can get NOW.

    • jim dandy

      either light up or leave me alone

  • DarkerMatter

    We should pass the bill to find out how it will work. On balance it is not forwards or backwards, but it is worth a try.
    Get a bong and smoke that!

    • “worth a try”?
      Is that what your tell your little sister or nephew or other hapless young adult 18-21 that just happened to be hanging around a “legal ouncer” and got all knotted up in the criminal justice system for DUID … at 18 … a lifelong collar?
      “Sorry, man, but it seemed like a good idea at the time. Seemed like it was worth a try.”
      Nice guy!

      • DarkerMatter

        I’m willing to bet history is not your strong suit. I would urge you to go to the library and check out a book or two on alcohol prohibition.
        I think that would correct some of your perceptions.

        • While he’s there he should also check out Monsanto and government regulation as well. There’s no need to be callous here, my only point is weed should have just as much regulation on it as tomatoes.

          • Dont Fear the Corps

            But that’s never going to happen, just like tobacco processors and alcohol distillers will never be treated like farmers markets.

            And if you think the corporations will go anywhere near this, you’re dead wrong. No one will risk forfeiture – its a risk they don’t need, and could never justify to shareholders.

            Unregulated cannabis will never happen, not anywhere, not ever.
            The closest you will ever get is home grow, and that will miles closer post 502. Don’t be an idealist – it just alienates people and makes every inch of progress needlessly difficult.

          • napkin

            do tomatoes get me high? i think not.

          • No but candy can make a diabetic drunk, everything affects each individual different, we’re over cautious with protecting soon to be victims that we forget its always the responsiility of the individual to know thy self.

          • Don’t fear the Corps

            Its not about protecting prospective “victims”, its about the harms of prohibition – and getting voters to see that harm.

            Starting from a blank slate, treating cannabis like any other agricultural product makes sense – but we’re starting with prohibition.

            Vote YES on I-502

      • Wow. You folks are so fixated on your “ideal” marjuana policy, you act like we already have it.

        18-21 year-olds are getting busted for DUI NOW. – ALL of the persecution of marijuana consumers – including drivers – is based on the fraudulent “illegality” of marijuana. After we re-legalize marijuana, there will be little motivation for prosecutions of drivers who are only statutorily “impaired.”

        There will be less arrests of drivers and of tween-agers.

      • So…your 18-21?

        Whose going to arrest them if pot is legal?

        Even if 502 doesn’t allow 18 year olds to possess cannabis, the social stigma and associated imputes for arrest is gone. Only the odd jerk-off cop will have any interest in spending 4 hours booking a kid on a pot possession charge which in Seattle at least, will never be filled or prosecuted)

        And as far as DUID goes, they shouldn’t be driving under the influence of ANYTHING, pot included.

        Any 18-21 year-old that uses their brain will be far less likely to suffer any consequences for smoking cannabis under 502 than they are now.

        Get real.

        • SteveSarich

          Any 16-20 year old that uses cannabis, even a couple of times a month, will be guilty of per se DUID every time they drive. It’s just a matter of WHEN, not IF, they’ll be caught. This will screw up their whole life. They will now have a PERMANENT criminal record for a drug related crime. With that on your record, don’t bother applying for a Federal student loan, like a PELL Grant. Forget dropping out of college and getting a job….you have a “drugged driving” charge on your criminal record. Forget renting an apartment….they now do criminal background checks too. You’re essentially screwed and there’s nothing you can do about it.

          Is that what we want for our kids? My daughter is 17 and I would NEVER wish that on her simply because she smoked a joint ….and then got pulled over two weeks later with traces of Active THC in her system. This is about punishing young people for using cannabis….NOT for driving impaired! This is exactly what the Drug Czar’s latest strategy is for the “war on drugs”.

          Don’t believe me? Go to his website:
          http://www.whitehouse.gov/ondcp/drugged-driving

          Then read how the stategy will work:
          http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/ondcp/issues-content/drugged-driving/nida_dd_paper.pdf

          If you refuse to read this stuff, please don’t pretend that you know what you’re talking about.

          Steve Sarich

          • The Get-Sarich Conspiracy

            You’re fear mongering, and no one believes your doomsday scenario. Not even you.

            502 is progress for everyone.

          • SteveSarich

            I-502 is “progress” for the war on drugs….and the Drug Czar who’s pushing this per se strategy. If you refuse to READ the strategy, like you refuse to read the law, don’t bother posting. We’ve had enough pollyanna speculation on how this is all going to work out just wonderfully and the Feds will just leave us alone.

            Read their plan, or shut the hell up and quit selling more bullshit.

            Steve

          • The Get-Sarich Conspiracy

            Ive read plenty.

            I’ve read 502. I’ve read the national drug control strategy. And I’ve read every word of your months-long tirade of horseshit.

            You lack credibility, and the things you say are not true.

            You’d have to be out-of-your fucking mind to believe the drug warriors support 502. Why is Kevin Sabet, who is almost certain to be a future drug czar, publicly opposing it?

            You can call me a liar all you want – but I’ve got actual facts to support the things I say. You just have half-witted fear-mongering. You can’t even keep the same line in bullshit for more than a week.

            We know what this is really about – you and the other “medical providers” who sell pot @4000/lb without paying taxes are worried about losing your cash-cow. You’re a greedy scumbag, and we know it.

            The DUID issue is a bill-of-goods, and you know it. If you got pulled over tomorrow, failed a field-sobriety test, and got blood drawn – you would be no less fucked than you would be under 502.

            Go away.

          • The Get-Sarich Conspiracy

            I almost forgot-

            Nice job shouting at Rick Steves – that really helped your cause.

            My 75 year old mother called me today, the angry pot growers yelling at her favorite celebrity convinced her that she needs to get her friends to vote for 502. She wanted some talking points.

            Priceless my friend. You convinced a teetotalling Christian Scientist to campaign for legalization.

            God you’re a moron.

          • SteveSarich

            “I’ve read 502. I’ve read the national drug control strategy. And I’ve read every word of your months-long tirade of horseshit.”
            “You lack credibility, and the things you say are not true.”
            “You’d have to be out-of-your fucking mind to believe the drug warriors support 502.”

            John McKay, New Approach Washington, on “taxing and regulating” marijuana…..

            “I DON’T smoke pot. And I pretty much think people who do are idiots.”

            “we should give serious consideration to heavy regulation and taxation of the marijuana industry (an industry that is very real and dangerously underground). We should limit pot’s content of the active ingredient THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), regulate its sale to adults who are dumb enough to want it and maintain criminal penalties for sales, possession or use by minors, drivers and boaters.”

            “As my law-enforcement colleagues know well from chasing bootleggers and mobsters, this new regulatory and criminal approach will still require many years of intensive investigation and enforcement before organized criminal elements are driven from the vast marijuana market.”

            Also from McKay:”It’s not DUIs that’s killing people and filling pits in Mexico with headless bodies. It’s the recreational consumer of marijuana”.
            John McKay – I-502

            Shit…where would I possibly get the idea that former Feds and current pot haters would be supporting I-502?

            “The DUID issue is a bill-of-goods, and you know it. If you got pulled over tomorrow, failed a field-sobriety test, and got blood drawn – you would be no less fucked than you would be under 502.”

            Ignorance is fixable….stupid is forever….but I’ll repeat this one more time for those of you who just got off the short bus….Currently, they would have to prove “IMPAIRMENT”. AFTER 502….they DON’T have to prove IMPAIRMENT. That’s the definition of “PER SE”. Please pay attention or we’ll have to throw you out of the class. You obviously DIDN’T read the materials you said you read.No more responses for you until you actually read the required materials on “per se DUIDs”.

          • The Get-the-Dopers Conspiracy

            Wow.

            You are nothing short of batshit crazy.

            No wonder you shouted at Rick Steves – you actually think there’s a conspiracy to arrest all the pot smokers.

            Good luck with that.

          • SteveSarich

            …..and there IS no “war on drugs” either, right? And the Feds love us and want us to open up pot stores in Washington. And every little 13 year old girl will have her own unicorn if I-502 passes.

            Sorry to burst your bubble. If they COULD, logistically, arrest every pot smoker in America, and afford to lock up 1/3 of the population in corporate run prisons, without a total revolution on their hands, they most certainly would. They’ve certainly been trying hard enough.

            OK…..so I’m “bat-shit crazy”and there’s actually no conspiracy by the Drug Czar, HITDA, the Federally funded state drug task forces, to lock us all up….why do we even need a “legalization” bill?

            You think they AREN’T trying to lock up all the cannabis users. I think we now know who’s actually “bat-shit crazy”. I think the cops might disagree with you.

            Steve Sarich

          • The Get Sarich Conspiracy

            Priceless.

            Keep it coming my friend. Tell me all about the Man’s secret plan.

            If the feds cared about pot they wouldn’t tolerate a single one of the thriving dispensaries we have all over the state. Or for that matter the thousands of dispensaries in California. They’re barely enforcing the law. And if you can find me a SINGLE case, just one person in the last 25 years who the feds have charged for possession without intent….

            ….Then I will stop calling you a liar and a whack-job.

          • The Get Sarich Conspiracy

            Just to beat a dead horse –

            Look Steve, here’s the reality –

            The feds care about: Afghan heroin,
            Colombian narco-guerrillas, Eastern-Euro Cyber Thieves, Chinese
            Data-theft, Italian Organized Crime, Mexican Cartels, Russian Organized
            Crime & Tech Theft, The (rapidly growing) Prison Gangs, the Outlaw Bikers, Triad
            Societies, The Yakuza, Libyan Terrorists, Syrian Terrorists, Af-Pak
            Terrorists, Somali Piracy &Terrorism, Iranian smuggling of fissile material & technology,
            currency counterfeiting, medicare fraud, social security fraud,
            human smuggling, human trafficking, document-counterfeiting and the
            never ending malignancy of our ever more gigantic population of street
            gang members.

            They don’t need
            “enforcement of marijuana laws” on that list to stay relevant and well
            paid – which is all they care about. If anything, the feds are less
            interested in enforcing drug laws now than they’ve been since the
            1970’s. Unless the people selling the drugs are international or really
            violent, the feds don’t care.

            The fact that you’re not doing time right this second is irrefutable proof of their indifference.

          • jim dandy

            everybobd thinks u r an asshole

          • jim dandy

            lol

  • A lot of words encouraging others to vote with the the cops, the drug czar, pee testers, alcohol/tobacco/pill companies and drug rehabbers, and the prohibitionists that hate everything about marijuana to reject legalization.

    I’m standing with NORML and the rest of the drug policy reform community in our country and supporting qualifying legalization ballot initiatives as major reform vehicles, rather than rallying against them, and, ironically, their most longstanding, active and natural political allies.

    A no vote or not voting on I-502 does not necessarily mean one is a prohibitionist. But it does make one, by virtue of the vote, a defacto prohibitionist.

    • I understand your passion just like the rest of us but this form of legalization does not protect the worker or parent, do you think perhaps this could have been thought through a little more?

      • If you try to get everything all at once, you end up where Oregon is – in failure. Getting 90 percent of what we want/need now is the best and fastest way to get to the ideal marijuana policy.

        • Dont Fear Progress

          This.

          Oregon’s initiative is a case in point for why we cant have everything at once. It alienates voters, and it fails to attract the major contributors a successful initiative campaign needs.

  • At least the article is titled correctly: “Opinion: A Washington Prohibitionist Perspective.” It sure is.

  • herbal

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  • The law isn’t perfect, that does not mean it isn’t a step forward.

  • phrtao

    I understand the laws proposed are not perfect but they may just give users a bit of an amnesty from police and social harassment – wherever or however they obtain their product. I am not in favour of legalising smokeable products – I would rather see licensing of tablets, food products or drinks that contain cannabis extract but only to a limited extent. I don’t see why it would need to be as available as alcohol (which is too available in society) or even why public use should be tolerated. Just knowing that possession or use on private property would not be cause for a police search or arrests would be good enough for me to be very happy. I-502 may just provide this for citizens of Washington state. It may allow some disagreeable people into the business but there are already plenty of those about ! You could still buy your product from the existing sources but feel much safer with it in your possession and who would not want that ? Anyone who has ever been to the Netherlands and smoked in coffeeshop knows that feeling even though they still have a criminal system of supply and production.
    You really do sound like a kill joy even though your concerns are legitimate

  • joiningthefight

    are you saying that Domonic Holden and http://www.nwbud.com. are working together?

  • “big money is involved in the funding for the law”

    Then you’re going to oppose anything that makes the ballot. It takes big money to mount an initiative campaign.

    “I can’t side with anything that could potentially diminish the quality of herb I get.”

    How would expanding the production market in marijuana reduce the quality of herb? When prohibition risk is lessened, growers will have to truly compete, and quality of herb will be their ticket to premium profit.

    Always distrust anyone – prohib or stoner – who tells you terrible things will happen if we legalize marijuana.

    • SteveSarich

      Does I-502 actually remove the laws from the Washington state codes that currently make marijuana illegal? Will it still be a Schedule 1 drug under State law? Which state laws does I-502 eliminate?

      Don’t believe anyone that call this piece of crap “legalization”, especially when that opinion is coming from a piece of crap who doesn’t mind lying about it being “legalization”. Even the NAW campaign refers to it as “decriminalization”…. depending on the time of day and who they’re addressing. They’re latest mantra is that it’s not a “pro-marijuana bill, it’s an anti-prohibition bill”. But they’re not calling it “legalization”.

      In ultra-conservative Yakima, she changed her story again: “This isn’t a pro-pot initiative. This is an anti-crime initiative”. So now it’s now even a “decriminalization initiative”. Now it’s an “anti-crime initiative”.

      Maybe she’ll be really honest (not likely) at some point, and call it what it really is….”a per se DUID initiative”….cause that’s all it’s going to be when the Feds stop the one ounce decrim portion of the 64 page bill.

      As to the “quality issue”….McKay, Holmes and Roffman have all stated (in debates) that the Liquor Control Board would be limiting potency of the state licensed marijuana. I guess we’ll be smoking “hemp-hash” if this initiative passes. I wonder how well the state’s “pot-lite” will go over with consumers in Washington? I know that’s just what every cannabis consumer has been begging for….limited potency cannabis! (But think of much safer we’ll all be!)

      That’s their plan for killing off the black market….selling highly taxed pot-lite….and leaving the black market to sell to teenagers and those who refuse to pay exhorbitant prices for pot-lite.

      Of course, even in the best case scenario, there won’t be any state licensed pot stores, pot growers, or state anything, until late in 2014, some time in 2015, at the earliest. So I guess the black market is not exactly shaking in their boots at this point. And I guess there won’t be any “billions in state revenues” until at least 2015, but there will be PLENTY of expenses in trying to set up a state regulatory system in the meantime. And that’s the best case scenario.

      Realistically, the LCB won’t pass regulations and there will be no stores. If they do write regulations, the Feds will stop the growers and the stores from ever doing business. The only speculation is which of those two things will happen first. I suspect the Feds will file suit against the state and the LCB will point to that as the reason they can’t write the regulations.

      Can anyone point to a reason, based on our past and current experiences with the Feds, that they WON’T try to stop the state from selling 187,000 lbs. of marijuana in 2015? They certainly have the time, the money, the power, and most of all, they’ve shown the will to do exactly that. They’ve shown us no indication that they’ll make a “political decision” in favor of legalizing marijuana in this country. If you believe that, you’re smoking something besides cannabis.

      Prohibitionists: People who want to pass even more laws making marijuana a crime….and wanting to give law enforcement the right to take your blood to prove that you’re a “criminal”.

      Please don’t be fooled by this Trojan Horse. Don’t sell out our 4th Amendment rights!

      Steve Sarich
      NO ON I-502 Campaign

      • Sec. 20(3) The possession, by a person twenty-one years of age or older, of useable marijuana or marijuana-infused products in amounts that do not exceed those set forth in section 15(3) of this act is not a violation of this section, this chapter, or any other provision of Washington state law.

        Sec 15(3) (a) One ounce of useable marijuana;
        (b) Sixteen ounces of marijuana-infused product in solid form; or
        (c) Seventy-two ounces of marijuana-infused product in liquid
        form.

        It’s funny you red shirts keep saying “it doesn’t remove any of the criminal laws keeping pot illegal.” But did you know that the Eighteenth Amendment is still a part of the Constitution? When the 21st repealed Prohibition, it didn’t erase the 18th, it merely rendered it invalid. Similarly, parts of the Constitution declaring black men 3/5ths human for representative purposes and direct election of Senators by state assemblies still exist, too.

        So, yeah, except for that part about “possessing one ounce isn’t a violation of Washington law”, it is still against the law to possess marijuana. You can split hairs with “legalization” “decriminalization” (and since when are we against decriminalization?) “anti-prohibition” and the like but however you slice it, on December 5 a cop can put me in jail for 24 hours for a joint in my pocket and on December 6 he cannot.

        Even if your doomsday scenario of “bad things will happen if we legalize” come true and there are no state stores and cops pull over every longhair they see and whip out syringes on the roadside and the feds huff and puff and blow the house down, on Dec 5 smell of pot is probable cause and on Dec 6 it ain’t. On Dec 5 if a cop knocks on my door and I’m smoking a bowl he has probable cause to burst into my home, on Dec 6, he does not.

        But best of all, on November 7th, headlines around the world read “US State Legalizes Marijuana” and Washington State becomes the most legal marijuana destination in the world, even more so than Amsterdam (you do know that coffee shops and marijuana possession are illegal in Holland, right?)

      • jim dandy

        shutp you face

      • jim dandy

        you should go chek yourself in

    • There are plenty of grassroot efforts that I support and never question. But just like the recent questionable “Costco Bill” that took liquor sales and control from the state, I question anything with the intent just to make money out of it.

      I’m not a complete idiot and realize we need to pay the bills but by putting the state in control of the marijuana, you give the state more room to create regulation on it as well. Regulation not just punishment for violators but regulation on the fundamental quality of the herb.

      When I talk about diminish quality I mean that the state will have more of a means to create a monsanto type condition on my herb. Herb that is pesticide and spider mite resistant which sounds all well and good but so did feeding cows other cows for cost effective production.

      The only thing this law allows is holding a large quantity that if there is a arrest than the legal brouhaha will unfold. There are still no worker rights and/or parental rights involved in this law.

      I understand stand your mistrust of people who speak of horrible things but I also mistrust the hand that tells me everything is going to be great while I don’t know what the other hand is doing.

  • opinionated

    I would like to see a cannabis pharmacy and your typical pharmacy side to side and watch how many patients recover from addictions and are rehabilitated, have their pain under control and can live productive lives. Without cannabis pharmasoticals have a corner on the market. I refuse to be branded as a criminal for smoking pot.

  • In the words of the infamous Jefferson Airplane: “Eat Starch Mom”

  • BRAVO!! Very well said.

    I am a medical patient and for legalization. The problem is NAW 502 is not in any way, shape or form legalization. This is not a step forward, but is 20 steps backwards. One only has to read the 65 pages to know the truth.

  • opinionated

    The only way we can prove it is not an addictive schedule 1 drug is for all of us quit smoking weed. The arrest will stop and dispensaries will not be closed. Federal and state must get on the same page. We can make a difference.

  • jim dandy

    you talk too much. the finer points of the law can be tweaked later. first we lagalize than worry about foolish fears later

  • opinionated

    I would think that those of you who know the business, would become the decision makers?

  • opinionated

    I do not consider myself a stoner. But the stoners I know have more character in their little finger than all of government. The hypocrisy of government to demand that we the people practice political correctness. While they are the greatest offenders toward pot smokers creating a criminal attitude toward us all and making moral judgements toward us denying us our own individuality.