The push for full fledged reforms on marijuana has been on the run for some time now and California seems to edge closer by the day. Based on the much advertised Proposition 64, the people believe that time has come for California to decriminalize and freely regulate both recreational and medical marijuana. Back in 2010, voters in California failed to make recreational marijuana legal where it narrowly lost to the opposition who won with a majority 54%. It was such a close decision that sent the message that the battle was still on. Voting was based on Proposition 19, which was mainly opposed not because the idea of legalizing pot was bad but only because the proposition was not drafted well. Those who voted against it had fears on the manner in which the herb would be regulated.
Today, things have changed a lot. Led by Washington and Colorado, four states have now legalized the recreational use of cannabis amongst adults. No major challenges have been experienced. On the other side, almost half of the states have now accepted the use of medical marijuana and Canada is working towards the use of marijuana among the adults come 2017. With the ongoing campaigns for the upcoming elections, the key presidential candidates consider this a wedge issue. In that case, they have promised not to frustrate the legalization efforts taken up by the individual states.
Over the years, they have been a big shift on perception towards drug policy. This has been prompted by the questions posed concerning the effect that has been realized with the fight on drugs over the decades. Ideally, there have been a lot of expenditures, marginalized communities, abusive drug cartels and overcrowded prisons. That is all that has been achieved significantly. Today, the idea that has been embraced by many is that, the enforcement of prohibition is more costly and yet has produced few benefits. Looking at these mixed outcomes, the federal government has apparently surrendered on its role. The work has now been left upon states to make decisions by themselves concerning the use and regulation of marijuana and in the end enact a national marijuana policy.
Efforts taken through Law Enforcement in California
In a move to legalize recreational marijuana amongst adults, concerned authorities have considered giving the people another chance to vote this November. This will be realized through Proposition 64, which is “the Adult use of Marijuana Act”. It is time for the voters to determine whether the hard stand on marijuana will be removed and left to control drugs such as heroin alone. If successful, this will see the recreation use of pot among adults with proper regulation frameworks.
The take by the law enforcers in California is to give voters a chance to make marijuana legal in the state. However, there are provisions made in proposition 64 that allows the legislatures to make amendments from time to time based on the results of its use. This move is considered better on issues of public health, for maintaining law and order and for the society in general. Well, the proposition is not believed to be perfect but it gives the issue a good standing. It is a very pragmatic and logical strategy of engaging in a process that would see a sober way of legalizing marijuana. The flexibility of regulators and lawmakers to make changes as may deem necessary is much welcome by all interested parties and stakeholders. The stand taken by the Californian governing authorities is that, the process of legalizing marijuana will continue to be in check even if the proposition 64 gets a “Yes” vote.
Although not official, California has ideally legalized marijuana. Almost any adult can access medical marijuana through recommendation and purchase the pot products in a legal manner from medical dispensary. Well, some users have not even bothered to fake any ailment and have bought the herb on the black market without any concern that they may go to jail. To end this, the law enforcement authorities give a chance to proposition 64 to tame the illegal market. In the event that this proposition passes, the law enforcement bodies will allow any person aged 21 years and above to grow, purchase and have marijuana for their own use. This will be allowed in businesses with licensing to warrant on-site use or in private homes.
Essentially, the state will continue to be in control especially on issues to do with licensing and regulation of the marijuana industry. Regulation will be right from the growth of weed, its processing, delivery channels and the selling process. The law enforcement authorities have also expressed interests owing to the revenue that will be collected following the commercial growing and sale of marijuana. It is expected that revenue collections may go up to $1 annually. Looking at the issues highlighted here, the law enforcement takes a soft yet strict stand on marijuana legalization in California. It hopes to fully control and regulate the use should Proposition 64 pass.