Posted By POSCA
On 1 January 2014, the Centennial State (Colorado) began its grand experiment with the legalization of choom (aka Mary Jane, ganja, wacky weed, wacky tabacky, mari-ji-wanna, happy hemp). Thus far, the experiment has been going as one might expect—it has produced all sorts of unintended consequences never envisioned by the pro-choom lobby.
First, no one realized there would be RULES to contend with (see “Emergency Rules Related to the Colorado Retail Marijuana Code”) such as where you can smoke, how it can be grown, inspections required, etc. Second, no one seems to have noticed that the possession and use of marijuana on Federal land is still illegal, and there is a lot of Federal land in Colorado (Ski slopes anyone?) Third, as one radio talk show host put it, marijuana combines the stink of tobacco with the stupidity of booze. In other words, it seems to offend everyone who is not lighting up—at this point, a majority of the people. Fourth, emergency rooms are seeing a switch from boozers to dopers, but no decline in clientele. Gee: if I get stoned and try to use my chainsaw, it is likely that I could cut off my hand? Or: if I get stoned and drive 85 mph on an icy road, I can still have a bad experience with an abutment?
Fifth, drug gangs have not fled the state. They still have a thriving business selling to anyone under 21 and/or unwilling to pay state taxes and inflated prices for legal recreational pot. Medical marijuana was being sold at about $150 per ounce earlier this year. Predictions were that recreational pot would be legally at about $185 per ounce. The real price today for legal pot is $350-$500 per ounce and up. Indeed, who can tell the difference between a joint made from gang choom and one made from state choom? Rather than putting the gangs out of business, the law gives them a cover. And if you consider that citizens are allowed to grow their own in limited quantities, it is hard to see how the state rationally expects to benefit at all. Sixth, vacationers will have to establish a local connection because there will be no choom sales at Denver International Airport. True, there will be state-regulated choom stored in eight Colorado municipalities, but what cab driver will take a fare to one of these stores when he/she can make the sale in person from his/her cheaper, private stash?
The stupidity of what Colorado has done is best exemplified for Posca by a phone call heard on a talk show on 850KOA radio on the day before implementation of the law. A caller from Breckenridge opined that the legalization of choom would literally save the planet Earth. Why? Because “hemp sucks up carbon dioxide” and “carbon dioxide causes global warming.” Thus, by growing as much hemp as possible, global warming would be defeated and the planet saved.
Assume for the moment that the caller is right. What happens when he lights up his hookah? All of that carbon dioxide is released back into the atmosphere. If he really wanted to save the planet, he should bury the choom deep underground for 20 million years and let it turn into something useful. But smoking choom has consequences, and I hope the rest of the country is paying close attention.
Don’t Bogart that joint.