Regulation would legitimize medical marijuana
By Wade McManus
Coloradoâ€™s medical marijuana industry is taking off as more and more dispensaries pop up around Fort Collins. This is good news for many Coloradans.
The number of medical marijuana patients is growing quickly, made easier by the quick access to in-house doctors at dispensaries. The high number of patients indicates marijuanaâ€™s effectiveness as a remedy for a number of ailments.
But it also points to possible regulatory flaws that threaten the legitimacy of the medical marijuana industry, spreading the perception that medical marijuana patients are drug addicts under the ploy of patients. Itâ€™s this very same stigma that has undermined marijuanaâ€™s acceptance nationally.
To assure the legitimacy of medical marijuana licenses, and to spread the perception of responsible marijuana use, there needs to be more government regulations. Particularly, there needs to be a separation between doctors doling out medical cards and the dispensaries supplying the marijuana.
Medical marijuana is different from other medications, as it requires a license. There are supposed to be strict standards met to be eligible to receive a license. But having in-house doctors providing medical cards out of dispensaries is a clear conflict of interest. The problem with this structure is not in how many patients are getting licenses, but the susceptibility to legal issues dispensaries are creating by affiliating with doctors supplying medical cards.
If the legitimacy of a medical card is questioned, the responsibility doesnâ€™t lie on the doctor alone, but the dispensary as well. Separating doctors from dispensaries only means good things for the medical marijuana industry. It ensures the legitimacy of medical cards while protecting the dispensaries, creating a model of responsible medical marijuana use to spread nationally.
Decriminalization, not regulation, needed
By Seth Stern
The popularity of medical marijuana licenses, reported to be as many as 30,000 applicants as of January 7th according to the Associated Press, justifies an outright decriminalization of the magic herb in the Centennial State.
There is a political movement gaining strength among the individual states of the union in which the states are exerting their sovereign authority under the auspices of the Tenth Amendment. Typically, the acts focus on nullifying any federal firearm law from having any effect on firearms manufactured within the borders of the given state, Montana was the first.
Why do I mention this movement? The federal drug laws created five decades ago during one of the darker periods for American government are asinine and ridiculous.
We already know the federal government and 50 states are staring at budget shortfalls, as are just about every county and municipality around the nation due to factors well outside of my word count, so why would we perpetuate this stupidity any longer?
Thirty thousand people in Colorado have applied for medicinal marijuana licenses, based on limited personal experience I suggest you would not have to search long to find 30,000 recreational marijuana users in Fort Collins.
The only requirement for alcohol consumption is living 21 years, and the dangers of alcohol in my mind far outweigh the dangers of marijuana. For the record, I have never partaken so I do not suggest this for personal gain. Nevertheless, it is pure insanity to continue this idiocy any longer.
Let us do the logical and intelligent thing, and decriminalize marijuana in Colorado. Do the necessary: tax it to the same levels of alcohol and invite every hippie and rapper in America to set up shop in Colorado. Most of Boulder falls into those two categories anyway, and we could use the revenue.