California legalizes recreational use of marijuana for adults

By Emile DeWeaver

California’s Proposition 64 passed overwhelmingly, legalizing recreational use of marijuana for adults who are at least 21 years old.

California residents and visitors may legally possess up to an ounce of marijuana and up to six marijuana plants, though users can be fined for smoking in public, reported NBC News.

Despite the possible fiscal benefits to California communities, not everybody celebrated California’s legalization of recreational marijuana use.

Growers and distributors in medical marijuana programs across the country voice concern about what corporate competition will do to caregivers, independent growers, and small vendors, reported the Denver Post.

“[B]ig business may try to impose regulations to keep other players out, which could lead to fewer products,” Beth Collins told the Denver Post. Collins leads Americans for Safe Access, a pro medical marijuana organization that, according to the Denver Post, believes government should regulate to prevent recreational programs from entering into competition with medical marijuana programs for the latter’s protection.

“I didn’t know all that was at stake with that proposition,” inmate Antoine Brown said, after he heard that some people in the medical marijuana community feared what corporate competition would do to their livelihoods.

“I don’t think it’s fair, though, putting people in positions where they can’t take care of their families,” Brown concluded.

Another inmate, James R. Metters, Jr., takes issue with Brown. “We’re talking the business realm, here. Some small businesses may fail, but others will figure out ways to advance.”

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