Cannabis Legalisation comes to Colorado

The day has finally arrived when you can buy legal cannabis in Colorado.

The NY Times reports:

Customers began lining up before dawn on Wednesday to take part in what they called a historic departure from drug laws focused on punishment and prohibition. Many had flown in or driven hours specifically to buy a bag of marijuana.

At the Medicine Man dispensary in Denver, which claims it is the closest marijuana retailer to the airport, as many as half the customers were from out of state, here for the first day that marijuana could be sold legally in Colorado.

The store?s owner, Andy Williams, said he had redesignated about 60 percent of his medical marijuana to be sold retail but worried that it would not be enough to meet the demands of the lines snaking out the door.

Despite the long lines, Mr. Williams said, people seemed thrilled to be able to walk into a shop, lay down $50 or $60 and openly buy the drug.

?This is Independence Day for the marijuana community,? he said. ?People don?t like breaking the law. The burden has been taken off them. ?

With security guards posted outside many stores and police and state officials watching closely, the day?s first sales appeared to go smoothly, officials said. ?So far so good,? said Ron Kammerzell, director of enforcement for Colorado?s Department of Revenue.

Mr. Kammerzell said the state had eight investigators checking retailers? licenses, inspecting packaging and labeling, and ensuring that stores checked each customer?s identification to see if they were 21 or older. ?

We have regulations for the legal sale of other drugs, including tobacco and alcohol, but also synthetic cannabis…so why do we still insist that organic cannabis is so bad?

To supporters, Wednesday was a watershed moment in the country?s tangled relationship with the ubiquitous recreational drug. They celebrated with speeches, hailing it as akin to the end of Prohibition, albeit with joints being passed instead of champagne being uncorked.

To skeptics, it marked a grand folly, one they said would lead to higher drug use among teenagers and more impaired drivers on the roads, and would tarnish the image of a state whose official song is John Denver?s ?Rocky Mountain High.? The governor of Colorado and the mayor of Denver both opposed legalization, and stayed away from the smoky celebrations on Wednesday.

Legalising the drug won;t lead to more users, or more impaired drivers…look at what alcohol does..and that is legal. Drunk driving is still drunk driving, as is drugged driving. Why the difference?