High resolution

12Aug16

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This week, the Wakefield Board of Selectmen passed a resolution opposing the legalization of marijuana, dealing a devastating blow to the local Cannabis Community.

On the bright side, most of them were too high to notice.

Dude, don’t the selectmen know that people have a Constitutional right to smoke weed? The Constitution was written on hemp paper, so its like, literally in the Constitution, man.

With arguments like that, how can Question 4 on the Nov. 8 ballot possibly lose?

But legalization is beginning to look like less a slam dunk than it did even just a few months ago. Recent polls are showing the voters evenly split on the issue and a July poll showed the anti-legalization forces ahead by 10 percentage points, 51-41.
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Is it possible that people are finally realizing that in the middle of a drug abuse crisis the last thing we should be doing is legitimizing another way to get high?

Or maybe people have finally figured out that the proponents are blowing smoke when they say that Question 4 is simply about allowing law-abiding adults to relax with a few bong hits after a long and productive day at the office. If that were all this was about, there would be no money to be made.

cashAnd, after all, it is all about the green – the stuff you can fold, that is. Pot industry proponents don’t want you to know that Question 4 would allow the sale of a long list of highly potent marijuana edibles with adorable names like “Pot-Tarts,” “Reef Jerky,” “Caramel Potcorn,” “KifKat Bars,” “Weedies” (breakfast of champions) not to mention a wide variety of “baked” goods.

Edibles – that’s where the money is.

Question 4 on the Nov. 8 election ballot would create a billion-dollar commercial marijuana industry in Massachusetts. The pot industry is like any other industry. It exists to make money and maximize profits. If you think that this industry won’t aggressively promote the use of marijuana, then you must be tasting advance samples of their products.

buttsLike its role model Big Tobacco, Big Marijuana doesn’t give a damn about the health and social consequences of its product. It only cares about profits.

In fact, the marijuana industry cynically exploited the sick in its insidious strategy to get to full legalization.

They used the sick to soften resistance to legalization by fooling enough people into buying into the scam of “medicinal” marijuana. They didn’t care about the sick except inasmuch as they could help to advance the true and ultimate goal, which was full legalization of a commercial, recreational marijuana industry.

In fact, Question 4 and the law that would go into effect if Question 4 passes were written entirely by the marijuana industry, and it severely limits the rights of cities and towns like Wakefield to control the number, type and location of retail stores.

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The marijuana industry also doesn’t care about the impact of its product on your kids or public safety. The first states to legalize commercial recreational marijuana, Colorado and Washington, now have the highest-in-the-nation rates of teenage pot use and have seen marijuana-impaired driving fatalities double.

clardyIf you don’t believe that pot impairs driving, tell it to the widow and six children of Lt. Thomas Clardy, the State Trooper who was killed last March after David Njuguna swerved across three lanes on the Massachusetts Turnpike in Charlton killing Lt. Clardy, who had stopped another vehicle for a traffic violation.

Prosecutors say that Njuguna had smoked marijuana shortly before the crash and that he purchased medical marijuana just an hour before crashing into Clardy’s cruiser. A burnt marijuana cigarette was found in Njuguna’s car and he had a level of THC in his blood, according to prosecutors.

We have enough problems with alcohol. We don’t need more widespread use of yet another intoxicating drug.

And please don’t tell me that legitimizing marijuana by legalizing it won’t lead to increased use. That’s what the marijuana industry wants you to believe, but it defies all logic. If there were no growth potential in the Massachusetts marijuana market, why is the pot industry spending millions on the campaign to legalize it? They know that when you legalize something, you get more of it, not less.

Remember how much time, money and effort were wasted trying to sort out the medical marijuana fiasco? Multiply that by 10 if recreational weed is legalized.

lewis_headcharlie_baker2Your elected Board of Selectmen knows that legalizing marijuana in Massachusetts is a bad idea. So does your elected Board of Health and your Police Department. So does your State Senator, Jason Lewis, Gov. Charlie Baker, Attorney General Maura Healy, Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.

As bad an idea as legal marijuana is for the general population, elected officials and law enforcement know that they are going to be the ones who will have to deal with a huge mess if Question 4 passes.

Do yourself and the rest of us a favor. Just vote “No” on Question 4 on Nov. 8.

[This column originally appeared in the August 11, 2016 Wakefield Daily Item.]

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