OP-ED: Will California Join Colorado to Legalize Marijuana for Recreational Use?


By D. Demond King, The Redemption Center

Recent legislation in Colorado legalizing recreational marijuana use is being touted as a “springboard” by many supporters of the nation’s burgeoning pro-pot movement.

Many residents of California have historically been favorable to legalization efforts. Voters rejected, 54-46 percent, a 2010 ballot proposition that would have legalized the drug.

California supporters of the movement are hoping to see legislation on the ballot in the Golden State as early as November this year.

Outlets like Green Remedy Collective and 7 Stars Holistic Healing located in Richmond currently dispense medicinal marijuana.

California first legalized the use for medicinal purposes in 1996 with the passage of Proposition 215 making California the first state in the union to do so. With two states (Washington in 2012 and Colorado as of New Year’s Day 2014) having approved recreational use, it stands to reason that California can’t be far behind.

There are currently several potential initiatives to legalize marijuana under consideration for the November ballot. According to a recent Field Poll in the Sacramento Bee, for the first time since 1969, 55 percent of California’s voters support legalization for recreational use.

A recent report from the California Attorney General’s Office says there is a financial benefit to legalization, and taxation could amount to hundreds of millions of dollars in the state’s coffers.

Opponents of the measures say that cannabis is a gateway to more dangerous drugs and should therefore be strictly regulated. Conversely, proponents of legalization have voiced opinions predicated on scientific studies indicating that the stigma attached to cannabis and its classification as a schedule 1 narcotic are unwarranted.

A critical tipping point is at hand.

There is an old saying, “As California goes, so goes the nation.” It would appear there is some truth in that truism.


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