There is a certain popular marijuana website funded by a company that rakes in money facilitating online sex trafficking of minors – I won’t link to it, because pimping little girls is no joke in my town – whose author won’t stop falsely demonizing Washington’s legalization measure, I-502.
That’s fine, this is America and we all enjoy the First Amendment. But rather than provide a reasonable discussion of the issue, the author has taken to ad hominem attacks against those who disagree. Most prevalent in his sights are Marc & Jodie Emery, primarily because the Emerys are well-respected activists who openly support I-502 through their very popular Cannabis Culture magazine and website and the Pot.tv live stream. Marc’s currently serving five years in US prison in Mississippi, supposedly for seed sales, but really for the purpose of derailing the legalization movement.
Whether or not one agrees with I-502, insulting a federal prisoner who’s donated millions to legalization and helped more people cultivate marijuana in North America than any single person and repeatedly calling his spouse a “trophy wife” while bragging in the comments about how much pussy one gets is not furthering an intelligent dialogue.
I bet it sure rakes in the page hits, though. So does tentacle porn and cute videos of kittens.
Since the author is regurgitating most of the points I read in other people’s writing (unsurprisingly), let’s deconstruct his bullet points of how awful Hempfest will be post-I-502 – with actual sections in the language, rather than conjecture and ad hominem attacks:
…as far as carrying around an ounce of marijuana and not being concerned with arrest? Unless you bought that ounce at a state-licensed store, you’d still get busted.
FALSE. Possession in I-502 is independent of purchase at state stores[i]. In fact, purchase and possession are independent in current criminal law, as well. I-502 clearly states that possessing an ounce of useable marijuana is not a crime. The term “useable marijuana” does not define where it must be purchased from[ii]. How clear does it need to be? Possession of useable marijuana under an ounce is not a crime, period.
Where people get hung up is “Yeah, but if there’s no legal place to buy it (store), it can’t be a legal ounce!” Wrong. After I-502, if you sell an ounce from a non-store, that’s illegal. Selling non-store weed is a crime. Having it is not. Selling is different than possession, that’s why there are two separate crimes on the books* now for it. I-502 removes the possession part at less than one ounce.
Besides, as the Supreme Court has told us, marijuana is fungible – you can’t tell medical from recreational from illegal from soon-to-be-legal. Nothing in Washington law or I-502 gives police the power to arrest you for not carrying a weed receipt.
If you took Emery at his word and happily passed what you believed to be that gloriously legal joint to your buddy — after all, Marc Emery said it was OK! — then you’d get your ass busted for “distribution.”
EXISTS NOW. How many people have you seen busted for passing a joint at Hempfest currently when cops can now arrest them for two misdemeanors, possession and distribution? OK, so how many will be busted in 2013 when the possession is legal, and in a place where the city attorney already says he won’t prosecute personal possession, and where he and the mayor will have been onstage at Hempfest openly supporting I-502?
If that bag in your pocket contained a crumb over 40 grams — not that unusual for some of us — you could be busted for felony possession.
EXISTS NOW. First of all, it is very unusual for most of us who do not sell to leave the house with almost an ounce and a half. Second, yes, if we say that one ounce is illegal, over one ounce is not (as it is now) – this is a problem? By god, if I can’t have all the weed I want, nobody gets a legal ounce?
Oh, if you somehow avoid being thrown in the slammer for any of the other new crimes 502 will put on the books — God help you if you accidentally pass the joint to a minor, by the way…
EXISTS NOW. I understand how this might be upsetting to bloggers in their fifties who like to pass joints to minors, but most of us supporting legalization don’t want to see teenagers smoking pot.
Personally, I think a 21-year-old limit like I-502 proposes sucks. If you can smoke cigarettes and join the Army, we should be able to trust you to handle a joint, or a beer, for that matter. However, we all know that an 18-year-old limit for pot will not pass politically so long as 21 is the age for booze.
The scare here is that most people who smoke pot (over a third) are aged 18-25. Many first smoke pot in college. And woe to the 21-year-old college senior who passes the joint to the 20-year-old college junior, he’s committed a crime!
Well, look, if there is going to be an age limit, there is going to be punishment for breaking that age limit, isn’t there? The lesson here for college kids smoking pot is don’t get caught passing joints… just like now! But at least after I-502, the college kid over 21 can go buy and smoke a legal joint!