By Barry Poppins, Marijuana.Com
Legal, recreational marijuana is coming to Colorado real, real soon. In a matter of months (January 2014ish), Amendment 64 will officially go into affect and some medical marijuana dispensaries in the state will have the ability to transfer over to 21+, recreational retail sales (there are various options on for these dispensaries).
And Denver-which was the first city in Colorado to set MMJ rules-naturally just became the first city to set forth its PRELIMINARY rules and regulations for retail sales. The biggest takeaway: medical marijuana isn't going anywhere, anytime soon in Colorado.
As is always (and unfortunately) the case with marijuana legalization and progression, it's a constant game of push and pull and compromise between activists, entrepreneurs, and politicians. And that means there are always going to be catches.
The city of Denver (and state of Colorado) realizes the whole world is watching how this "experiment" goes in their state. And they (rightly) don't want the state turning into a dab-riddled zombie apocalypse with 13 year olds carrying around bongs like backpacks.
"The whole world is watching, not just the country," said Councilman Charlie Brown, who led the council committee on the issue. "There will be some changes. It is a work in progress. We did what we could, but this is a huge unknown."
Several council members were upset after a free marijuana giveaway Sept. 9 in Denver's Civic Center park that included public pot smoking, which is against the law. No one was arrested or cited for the violations.
"When people are blatantly flaunting our laws and putting it in our face, that is not what we want for the city," Brown said.
"As a new industry, we recognize and accept the responsibility to ensure responsible use by adults and to keep this product away from minors," he said in a statement. "We look forward to continuing to work with the city to meet those shared goals." [Denver Post]
Amendment 64-s initial rules will seek to limit most advertising opportunities for marijuana businesses and dispensaries, and will not allow the following kinds of ads:
- Mass media, including TV, billboards, radio and print ads, visible to audiences that might include 30% or more minors.
- Internet videos, radio shows, and podcasts that can't be blocked off from minors
- All pop-up ads online
- Flyers or leaflets handed out or distributed to anyone in public - including on cars and door-to-door flyer drops
- Mobile ads or apps that anyone under 21 might download or see
- Signage or sponsorships at events where 30% or more of the audience --- or passersby who could see the signage --- might be minors
- Any ads whatsoever run on media outside of Colorado, including tourism publications
Queue the "First Amendment rights" pleas from activists, stoners, and dispensary owners throughout the nation. While these restrictions certainly constitute as a modicum of bullshit, it's important to remember Rome wasn't built in a day, and marijuana in America is by no means a new development. This. Will. Take. Time.
Keep in mind, these are initial rules and they are ones with good intent: to keep marijuana out of the faces of minors and assimilate the plant into society in a gentle, seamless manner. And clearly ones open to loose interpretation (it's not so easy to block a Youtube video from minors).Likewise, we all must be patient here in Colorado, cause it's going to take some serious time before this plays out how it should and eventually will be out. Until then, hold onto those red (or green) cards, comply with the law, and be a responsible medical marijuana patient.
We'll have more on how to accomplish just that in the near future (specifically in Colorado), but in the mean time, take some time to read the entire document outlining all initial rules set into place right here.
Source: Marijuana.Com - syndicated with special permission