Oregon Will Vote to Legalize Recreational Marijuana

Oregon

In two months’ time the Oregon State Legislature is going to take a vote to legalize and regulating recreational marijuana. While possession and use of pot is illegal under federal law in the United States, 20 states in the country already permit its use by patients who have a doctor’s prescription. Dubbed as Measure 91, the proposed initiative will allow adults in Oregon to possess marijuana, which would be up to eight ounces at home and one ounce in a public location.

At present, the state allows use of cannabis only for medicinal purposes. The Medical Marijuana Program which started as early as 1998 had already made pot user-friendly by legalizing the dispensaries. At last count, Medical Marijuana Cards have been unreservedly issued to about 65,000 Oregonians. The program had been operating in a legal gray zone until 2013 when the state’s lawmakers passed a law to regulate them.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon supports Measure 91 advocating that taxpayers’ money is presently being wasted on arresting and prosecuting marijuana users. Permitting cannabis will also allow its users access to straightforward regulations and taxation.

Early reports suggest that taxes will be levied by the producers at the point of sale, ranging from $5 to $35 per ounce depending on the potency. The Oregon Liquor Control Commission will regulate and monitor this. While these tax rates appear too low, it is an incentive for people to shy away from the black market. Additionally, the sales tax on marijuana, which is an alien concept in Oregon, will be used for funding schools, education programs, drug prevention and law enforcement in the state. The Oregon State Financial Estimate Committee believes that if voters to legalize recreational marijuana, the state could generate tax revenues of close to $40 million annually.

Oregon will be following in the footsteps of Washington State and Colorado, which have already legalized cannabis. A favorable vote to legalize recreational marijuana will allow Oregonians to grow their own crop. However opposition lobbyist Darrell Fuller believes that legalizing weed is not in the state’s best interest. Survey’s conducted among teens indicates an alarming percentage of youth who don’t regard consuming weed as particularly dangerous or believe in its harmful effects on brain development.

Allowing retail sale of recreational cannabis will make it easily accessible for underage children. Many believe this is not a concern of real consequence since legalization will merely add marijuana to the line of “adults only” products, which already contain alcohol and tobacco usage.

An encompassing legalization will also give rise to increased incidences of people driving under intoxication. This is a particularly knotty situation for the law enforcement officials given that there is no simple or reliable screening, which can be made for intoxication. The Oregonian pointed out, “There is no bong breathalyzer.”

On the Nov.4 ballot, supporters will vote for bringing a fresh perspective to marijuana policy in Oregon, support for honesty and convenience, rather than hoodwinking the legal system or simply driving across the Columbia River to Washington State. This will be Oregon’s second chance in the past two years for a vote to legalize recreational marijuana. In the same month, Alaskan voters will also decide the fate of decriminalizing recreational marijuana for adults while Washington, D.C. votes to legalize possession and home cultivation of marijuana.

By Nilofar Neemuchwala

Sources:
The Oregonian

Huffington Post

Williamette Weekly

10 Responses to "Oregon Will Vote to Legalize Recreational Marijuana"

  1. Rick   September 26, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    Stop the war on drugs and legalizi them as Portugal has. No war on drugs translates to no deaths, no tax dollars going to incarceration for drug offenders and just more peace in the world. If people are going to do drugs they are going to find a source to get them and do them. Let them grow a God given medication in their back yards if they choose. Oh sorry we don’t live in a free country as advertised. Funny thing is, I personally partake in it but I know many successful small business owners who do.

    Reply
  2. FU man chu   September 3, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    my thought, John T is an anal prick! or a prick in the anus. either way shut up jerk off.

    Reply
  3. john t   September 3, 2014 at 10:42 am

    Proofread your article why don’t you.
    “…take a vote to legalize and regulating [regulate] recreational marijuana.”
    “…that if voters [choose] [decide] to legalize recreational marijuana,”
    Just for starters

    Reply
  4. Homer Runnington   September 2, 2014 at 9:01 am

    “Prohibition goes beyond the bounds of reason in that it attempts to
    control mans’ appetite through legislation and makes a crime out of
    things that are not even crimes. A prohibition law strikes a blow at
    the very principles upon which our Government was founded.” Abraham Lincoln

    Reply
  5. Nick   September 1, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Wait, in the first paragraph you say the Oregon State Legislature will vote to legalize but in the final paragraph you say this is a ballot measure to be decided by the public. Which is it?

    Reply
    • Drew Lunn   September 1, 2014 at 2:03 pm

      It is an initiative petition, to be decided by voters in November.

      Reply
    • Bob   September 3, 2014 at 7:41 am

      Yeah, perhaps the author should have a basic understanding of how laws are made, in particular the difference between the referendum and initiative process and the more common legislative route, before writing an article purporting to inform others?

      Reply
  6. Brian Kelly   September 1, 2014 at 10:21 am

    If you really want to protect families from a drug proven to destroy lives and families, then you should be up in arms, protesting the legality of booze.

    Alcohol is the number one cause for traffic fatalities and domestic violence by a huge landslide.

    Why doesn’t that concern you even more?

    Regarding “The Children”,

    Let’s not use “The Children” as an excuse to prohibit and criminalize adult use of a natural plant far less dangerous than perfectly legal alcohol because nobody condones child use, and this is about allowing adults only to choose marijuana.

    It’s our responsibility as parents by to educate our children on drug use. It’s not the government’s job to force Draconian Marijuana Laws upon every adult citizen under the guise of protecting “The Children”.

    What message are we sending our children when it is easier for them to obtain marijuana now with it being illegal than it is for them to buy alcohol?

    It doesn’t take the intellect of a genius to understand that stores card kids for I.D. Thugs and gang members do not. They also push the real hard drugs on children. Stores do not.

    Marijuana legalization will make it harder for children to obtain it.

    What message does it send our children when the President of The United States himself alongside a long list of successful people openly admit regular pot use at one time or another in their lives?

    While we tell our kids how it will ruin their futures, and then insure so, by allowing our government to to jail our children and give them permanent criminal records when they get caught with a little Marijuana. Especially, if they are the wrong skin color or from the “wrong neighborhood”. Which in turn, ruins their chances of employment for life.

    The Prohibition of Marijuana is the wrong message to send our children while we glorify, advertise and promote the much more dangerous use of alcohol like it’s an all American pastime.

    The worst thing about marijuana and our children is what happens to them when they get caught up in the criminal justice system due to it’s prohibition.

    Protect “The Children” and Our Neighborhoods Through The Legalization and Regulation of Marijuana Nationwide!

    Reply
  7. Brian Kelly   September 1, 2014 at 10:19 am

    In the prohibitionist’s world, anybody who consumes the slightest amount of marijuana responsibly in the privacy of their own homes are “stoners” and “dopers” that need to be incarcerated in order to to protect society.

    In their world, any marijuana use equates to marijuana abuse, and it is their God given duty to worry about “saving us all” from the “evils” of marijuana use.

    Who are they to tell us we can’t choose marijuana, the safer choice instead of alcohol for relaxation, after a long, hard day, in the privacy of our own homes?

    People who use marijuana are smart, honest, hard working, educated, and successful people too, who “follow the law” also.(except for their marijuana consumption under it’s current prohibition of course) .

    Not the stereotypical live at home losers prohibitionists make us out to be. We are doctors, lawyers, professors, movie stars, and politicians too.

    Several Presidents of The United States themselves, along with Justin Trudeau, Bill Gates, and Carl Sagan have all confessed to their marijuana use. As have a long and extensive list of successful people throughout history at one point or other in their lives.

    Although, that doesn’t mean a damned thing to people who will make comments like “dopers” and “stoners” about anybody who uses the slightest amount of Marijuana although it is way safer than alcohol.

    To these people any use equals abuse, and that is really ignorant and full of hypocrisy. While our society promotes, glorifies, and advertises alcohol consumption like it’s an All American pastime.

    There is nothing worse about relaxing with a little marijuana after a long, hard day, than having a drink or two of alcohol.

    So come off those high horses of yours. Who are you to dictate to the rest of society that we can’t enjoy Marijuana, the safer choice over alcohol, in the privacy of our own homes?

    We’ve worked real hard our whole lives to provide for our loved ones. We don’t appreciate prohibitionists trying to impose their will and morals upon us all.

    Has a marijuana user ever tried to force you to use it? Probably not. So nobody has the right to force us not to either.

    Don’t try to impose your morality and “clean living” upon all of us with Draconian Marijuana Laws, and we won’t think you’re such prohibitionist hypocrites.

    Legalize Nationwide! Support Each and Every Marijuana Legalization Initiative!

    Reply
  8. Drew Lunn   September 1, 2014 at 9:26 am

    This is a horribly written and edited article. Much of the subject matter is blatantly false. Taxes will be levied at 35$ for an ounce of bud, regardless of potency. The 5$ tax is for plants of any potency. There is no data to support an increase in impaired driving, or increased teen use, relating to the legalization of cannabis on any level in any state. It would seem, based on the quality of the writing in this article, that guardianlv.com neither supports spell check, nor fact checking.

    Reply

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