Top 5 Fallacies of Stoners Against Legalization
California, Arizona, Nevada, Massachusetts, and Maine are all poised to vote for marijuana legalization in November. But in every state that has ever voted to legalize, there is always a tiny contingent of Stoners Against Legalization telling you to vote to help the cops maintain marijuana prohibition. Here are the five most common reasons they’ll give you and why they’re absolute bunk.
Legalization Will Destroy Medical Marijuana!
When California in 2010 and Washington in 2012 had legalization on the ballot, some insisted that legalization would devastate medical marijuana. While California’s Prop 19 failed, Washington’s I-502 passed, and since then, there have been some cutbacks and changes in their medical marijuana program
Why it’s bunk: Washington State never had a well-regulated medical marijuana program and efforts to tighten it up were already in the works in their legislature. California has already passed new regulations for the medical marijuana industry and the other four states already have well-regulated programs.
All the states voting on legalization have initiatives with language expressly protecting their medical marijuana programs, and in most cases, improving them with protections for patients’ rights to indoor grow, child custody, organ transplants, housing, or employment protection.
Legalization Is a Scheme to Manufacture More Stoner Arrests!
Some people will tell you that the legalization initiative contains new ways to allow police to arrest more cannabis consumers than they do now. Another fear is that legalization will somehow incentivize cops to go after people just over the newly-legal limits for possession and growing.
Why it’s bunk: Usually what they are looking at in the initiative is language that restates what the law is currently. It differs from state to state, but new law in an initiative is usually ALL CAPS, boldfaced, or underlined, while the existing law is in plain text.
As for the incentivized cops theory, even if they were, legalization takes away their favorite tools to investigate stoners: the “I smell pot” excuse and the pot-sniffing K-9 dog. Since Washington and Colorado legalized, their overall marijuana charges have dropped 63 percent and 80 percent, respectively.
Legalization Will Lead to High-Priced, Low-Quality Marijuana!
This fear has existed as long as there have been stoners. Legalization will mean that big corporations take over the weed business, pumping out mass-produced, pesticide-laden, sub-par bud that costs way more than what we buy today.
Why it’s bunk: Federal prohibition still means that the Monsantos and Altrias of the world can’t get involved with legal weed. State-level legalization means only state-level companies are getting involved in the game.
Plus, legalization means testing and regulations that your illegal marijuana grower doesn’t bother with. Not only does the weed get better, but even with tax, it gets cheaper. Shoppers in Washington State now are finding prices at an average of under $10 per gram, with the 37 percent tax, the nation’s highest, added in.
Legalization Will Lead to Monopolization and Eliminate Family Grows!
This fear ties into the previous fear, with the big corporations taking over the weed business and squeezing out the small family grower who can’t compete.
Why it’s bunk: Sure, if your business model was based on being the only weed guy in town, you’re in for some competition. But all five states pushing for legalization have some form of licensing for small grows. The currently legal states have all sorts of small family companies involved.
Even in the world of Budweiser and Coors, we are seeing an explosion in small craft brewed beer in America. There’s no reason to think marijuana won’t be the same.
Legalization is Inevitable, So Why Accept This Crappy Legalization?
This may be the most sinister of their cries. They’ll object to the legalization as not being good enough and that by waiting just a couple more years, a better legalization could be passed.
Why it’s bunk: Usually these folks preferred a competing initiative that didn’t make the ballot, and think it could make the ballot next time. But they never have a solution to the funding and signature deficits that plagued their favorite initiative this time, so how would it make the ballot next time?
Prohibition negatively affects thousands of lives every year, even in decriminalized California, Massachusetts, and Maine. The Stoners Against California’s Prop 19 in 2010 promised something better in 2012, and that didn’t materialize until 2016. Even so, some of them are again saying, “wait til next time”.
We cannot wait. Legalization beats prohibition every time. Don’t be fooled by Stoners Against Legalization.