There is no question that the federal government is not happy about some states legalizing the use of marijuana. With legalization causing a nightmare for both DUI and other laws, things are just now beginning to surface that are raising red flags and showing unintended consequences that were not anticipated when pot became legal.
The latest in the pot legalization saga are rumors of the introduction of pot social clubs in Colorado. One more thumb in the nose of the federal government, there isn’t much the feds can do since it is a state-governed responsibility and decision.
Colorado was one of the first states to legalize pot and now they might take it one step further and grant licensure to specific pot clubs, but no one will need to run to a criminal defense law firm near me just yet! The way that they will be licensed, the rules that they will have to adhere to, and the way they are regulated are all things that are more than just secret; they are unfounded.
Denver officials are working on the details of opening up a pilot of clubs that will allow patrons to bring their own pot. A slide back from legislation to remove smoking from all bars and restaurants, it appears that they are toying with the idea of having “smoking rooms” allocated to taste marijuana located inside the establishments. Somewhat like distribution centers, the clubs are likened to a cigar bar — but with pot on the menu instead of Cubans.
Alaska was the first state to become fearful of how a Trump Administration might tackle marijuana legalization, and the state recently decided that trying to push the buttons of the federal government might not be a good idea. They voted not to move forward with their plan of sanctioning authorized marijuana dealers, and then put the entire issue on hold.
Maine and California have likewise voted to allow for the legalization of pot, but they have yet to draft any rules related to the sale, distribution, or growing of pot. Oregon is considering allowing pot at special events like concerts and festivals by sectioning off specific smoking places. Colorado, however, is the first state to allow pot to be out in the open and acceptable.
Modeled like Amsterdam, Colorado refuses to turn back now. Since they made pot legal, the rules pertaining to growth and use have decreased. With marijuana becoming as accessible as alcohol, you can see pot smokers on the sidewalks and walking down the street. Even for Colorado, that is a pretty bold movement.
The truth is that no Colorado resident ever voted to allow pedestrians the right to smoke it right out in the open, and there are fears that the extended use of it might hurt the state’s travel and tourist industry. Both sides of the political fence in the Colorado legislators voted to legalize marijuana, but perhaps neither thought it through or realized the full potential of what that meant without making provisions for it to not get out of control.
The entire thought process behind legalizing pot was based on the fact that it should be used for medicinal purposes. The intent, however, has been drastically changed. Much more like pill parties, the clubs that they intend to pilot are like taking your hydrocodone and passing it around. The clubs simply wouldn’t happen with prescription drugs.
There are some that worry that initiating such clubs could catch the eye of the feds and force them into the picture to gain control. A federal crackdown might be the response to such an overreach of legalities. What Sessions will do is anyone’s guess, but with Trump’s mantra of return to law and order, it is likely that Sessions will not just look the other way.
The grassroots movement to legalize pot insist that it isn’t within the federal government’s jurisdiction to override a state law. But what most legal scholars will attest to is that if there is a legal will at the federal level, there is a legal way to insert yourself. Before Colorado legislators decide to go one step forward, they might want to think about what happens when you poke a bear.