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Since: Mar 2019
Posts: 71

Should Merchants Encourage Marijuana Dispensaries to Locate in their Communities?

Sat May 11 '19, 5:15pm - 325 views

The decision to allow Louisiana citizens access to medical marijuana has been a controversial one. On June 30, 2015, Gov. Bobby Jindal signed into law HB 149, which allowed medical marijuana to be dispensed across the state, though the infrastructure to dispense pot wasn’t in place yet. On the same day, he signed SB 143, which made the punishments for being caught with marijuana much less strict than they used to be. Still, pot smokers could be given a fine of $300 and sent to jail for 15 days for a first offense.

The next year, Gov. John Bel Edwards surprisingly expanded Jindal’s medical marijuana bill, making it more accessible to citizens. He extolled his decision: “This is one of those bills that I believe will have a positive impact on people who need it the most.” Gov. Edwards passed the bill for people suffering from 10 serious diseases including cancer, epilepsy, Crohn’s Disease, muscular dystrophy, and AIDS. He made it clear that he didn’t want to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Some lawmakers are currently advocating to have more medical conditions added to the list of those that quality for marijuana treatment.

Though recreational marijuana smokers may have to wait a long time to have total legalization, it seems as though the current proceedings are a step towards a pot-friendly Louisiana.

More than half of adults in America; over 128 million have experimented with marijuana, despite it being an illegal drug under federal law. Today nearly 600,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession annually; more than one person per minute. Public support for legalizing marijuana has gone from 12% in 1969 to 66% today. Starting with Colorado and Washington in 2012, recreational marijuana has been legalized in ten states and DC.

Proponents of legalizing recreational marijuana say it will add billions to the economy, create hundreds of thousands of jobs, free up scarce police resources, and stop the huge racial disparities in marijuana enforcement. They contend that regulating marijuana will lower street crime, disrupt the drug cartels, and make marijuana use safer through required testing, labeling, and child-proof packaging. They say marijuana is a relatively harmless herb and that adults should have a right to use it if they want too.

Opponents of legalizing recreational marijuana say it will increase teen use and lead to more medical emergencies including traffic deaths from driving while high. They contend that revenue from legalization falls far short of the costs in increased hospital visits, addiction treatment, environmental damage, crime, workplace accidents, and lost productivity. They say that marijuana use harms the user physically and mentally, and that its use should be strongly discouraged, not legalized.

Since: Mar 2019
Posts: 71
1

The Green Leaf Dispensary in Houma is ready for customers. A small waiting room by the entrance opens to a larger dispensing room lined with newly installed glass cabinets and shelves that as of Tuesday (April 2) were still bare.

It might take another month and a half before any of the nine licensed dispensaries in Louisiana have product available to sell. Like many who invested early on in the state’s burgeoning medical marijuana industry, Omar Pecantte, a co-owner of Green Leaf Dispensary, is frustrated by the delays that have held up the opening of the business.

Since: Mar 2019
Posts: 71
2

Within weeks of New Orleans' first ordinance prohibiting marijuana in 1923, police raids rounded up alleged users and peddlers on the streets, in houses, restaurants, and soft drink stands. Smokers were dubbed "muggleheads"—drawing on a vernacular term for marijuana.

Since: Mar 2019
Posts: 71
3

One industry advocacy group attending the country's largest marijuana business convention in New Orleans this week held a presentation in the capital city Tuesday night. The group, Women Grow, encourages women and minorities to become leaders in the emerging industry.

Since: Mar 2019
Posts: 71
4

I know, I know, when you talk about marijuana to someone who was around in the 70s, it’s likely they’ll come up with a Cheech and Chong jingle; “No stems, no seeds that you don’t need” went the ditty; and an inside joke of the day.  More than 40 years later would-be cannabis cultivators and dispensary owners across Louisiana are about to create ditties of their own to enhance their brands, and come up with a campaign as effective as “Maui Wowie”.

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