Michigan Leading The Way To Help Pass Federal Marijuana Laws
It might be time to invest in munchies. The House of Representatives have passed a bill to decriminalize marijuana at the federal level. There is still the Senate and the president's signature - and the vote was close 220 to 204 in favor of allowing states to decide on recreational Mary Jane usage.
The legislation has many detractors of course; but following the money is always the first place to check. Currently; some major banks will not take state marijuana funds because of the laws at the federal level that could land them in hot water for money laundering drug proceeds.
The new law is known as The Marijuana Opportunity and Expungement Act or (MORE).
The MORE act, in a nutshell; will eliminate arrest records for certain violations and hand the states the power to regulate the sales/distribution and taxes as they see fit, with the federal government staying out that process - naysayers still use terms like "gateway drug" and are concerned about a stoned population wandering around like zombies.
Those in favor note it is much like prohibition was to booze, it's done nothing but put people in jail, filling up the courts and jails and all the while giving people serious criminal records for a bag of ganja. The laws as they stand also make "the criminals" selling the marijuana filthy rich, money they do not pay taxes on.
They also note that someone can get blind drunk, and get behind the wheel and even if they're caught, it's a misdemeanor and they are out a jail the next day with a simple ticket and a court date to answer for their transgression, before it was legal here, you would be in jail two or three days sometimes waiting for the court to decide how they would proceed with your criminal activity.
It's not my thing personally, but I see no issue with it at all. I still like bourbon on the rocks and ice cold beer (and that's perfectly legal in my garage)
The state of Michigan this year will take in 1.58 million dollars in tax revenue from recreational sales. This doesn't take into account the amount of money that is saved by not tying up courts and jails with simple possession of marijuana. This will take money out of the "criminal" hands, (who are only providing a product that a consumer wants) and costs will be determined by fair market pricing and all the time you hear about drug deals "gone bad" where people get shot and killed, when was the last time you heard about an alcohol deal gone bad?
There are tests that law enforcement can do right on the road to determine if you're driving under the influence of all drugs, including marijuana and opioids - and a drunk driving ticket is very expensive, but as long as no one is hurt and you follow court orders you don't have a felony record and usually can continue on with your life - why can't weed be the same way?
Michigan has had legal sales for well over a year now, and there are not a million zombies walking around, there are not people with drug related records trying to find a job and the savings in court and jail time is something I will follow up on as well.
Whatever side your on, it will go to the Senate soon, make your voice heard with your representative; it is an election year after all.
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