Legalization Battle In Colorado Already Showing Signs Of What Killed CA Prop 19

Legalization Battle In Colorado Already Showing Signs Of What Killed CA Prop 19

The420TimesStaff | May 20, 2011 | Comments 0

You would think a bunch of cannabis users would be able to come together and cooperate with level heads; after all, isn’t that one of the stereotypes of “stoners?” We don’t fight among ourselves, and we pull together for the common good of ending cannabis prohibition.

In a perfect world that would be the case, but if California Prop 19 showed us anything, it’s that cannabis law reformers can in-fight with the best of them.

420timesjoint 4 small1 Legalization Battle In Colorado Already Showing Signs Of What Killed CA Prop 19

A few days ago several initiatives were filed in Colorado asking voters to approve the legalization of cannabis for those over the age of 21 – possession of less than an once at a time – and allow the state to set up a regulatory framework for the retail sales of marijuana. All the initiatives would allow people to grow up to 6 plants, and all ban the public use of cannabis. Some set up a 15% excise tax on wholesale marijuana sales.

Sounds reasonable, but hold on. From Laura Kriho of Colorado’s Cannabis Therapy Institute comes a shot across the bow of the initiative filers.

Sad to see that your divisive tactics from the 1997/98 campaign are alive and well in Colorado today. You couldn’t even release your initiative to the public and get public input before you filed it. You only gave us a few days to look at it. You never even asked us once for our own initiative language, which we have been working on for over a year. You never met with any of the other groups working on legalization initiatives in the state. You agreed to participate in a debate on the issues in June, never once indicating that you were on the verge of filing your initiative. So much for trust, but I guess I was foolish to hope for anything better, after our experiences with you in 1997/98.

It just shows that your only interest is in your own self-interest, not in actually working to create meaningful reform in Colorado.

Not a great start, but obviously not crippling. Yet we saw in California how infighting can infect a movement and bring a legalization bill to its knees. If we are serious about marijuana law reform, we must find a way to work together; otherwise it’s very easy for our opponents to point to us and say “see, even they can’t agree on legalization.”

We simply cannot give the opponents of marijuana legalization ammunition to use against us. We have enough difficulty countering the constant lies they feed the mainstream press. This fighting in CO needs to be nipped in the bud now, before permanent damage is done.

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