November 09, 2018, Washington D.C.
Muriel Browser, the Democrat mayor of Washington D.C. has been reelected to her office. And with that she has announced its intention to introduce legislation for the legalization of adult-use marijuana in the district. Experts are of the opinion that the announcement from the mayor is an upshot of the Democratic takeover of Congress in the midterm elections.
Washington D.C. has an interesting legislative landscape. The council of the District of Colombia can form the laws for the compact city. However, the laws passed by the council can be overruled by the House of Representatives.
The District voters approved a ballot measure to legalize the use, possession, and growing of minor amount of cannabis four years ago. However, the Republican-led House of Representatives exercised their legislative supremacy and prevented the local administration from regulating and taxing marijuana. Without regulation and taxation in place, the administration couldn’t give a go-ahead to the commercial operations.
That was not the first time when congressional interference thwarted cannabis reform in D.C. The district legalized the medical uses of cannabis in 1998. But it took fifteen years for the first MMJ dispensary to go operational, all because of interference from congressional lawmakers.
Democratic House Representatives are going to chair the committee that will look after the matters of the District of Colombia. They have hinted that they are not going to override any piece of legislation passed by the district council. In other words, if the mayor office moves forward with a bill to allow commercial sales in the city, there are virtually no chances of it to get annulled by the Congress.
An Absurd Contradiction
Legalizing the use of strain but not allowing its commercial sales is just a plain inanity and nothing else. Where one should get the cannabis strain for its legal use? No federal lawmaker has answered that question so far. This lazy legislation from the congressional lawmakers has an only paved way for a black market to thrive.
It’s an open secret in D.C. that people who consume cannabis get their stuff from underground pop-up markets. Law enforcement officials raid those places after a while, confiscate the products and penalized the owners. However, all such crackdowns don’t reap any long-lasting results because these underground cannabis markets just ‘pop up’ again.
The main reason for this insistent nature of the pop-up market is the complete lack of legal cannabis products in the district. People can’t buy legal recreational marijuana products anywhere in Washington D.C. And as a last resort, they have to go to the underground market.
By embracing complete legalization of cannabis including its commercial sales, Washington D.C can save its strained law enforcement resources that go in vain with these futile crackdowns against pop-up markets.
Moreover, the regulation and taxation of cannabis will help the district in collecting a significant amount of tax revenue. An additional stream of income in the form of different cannabis taxes will help the district in dealing with its financial woes.
Marijuana stays in the news, and Alice is always ready to keep us updated. A world traveler and lover of freedom, Alice knows what is going on, no matter where she roams. She specializes in marijuana legalization stories across the globe, with up to date... [read more]