As CNN is reporting, California’s marijuana legalization initiative has made for some strange bedfellows; law enforcement officers in favor while some marijuana growers are opposed, just to name two examples.
As our Los Angeles medical marijuana defense lawyers frequently report, all one has to do to understand the motivation of the various players is to follow the money: Until the marijuana industry is legitimized, the criminal element will continue to reap the majority of the benefits, while law enforcement and local governments will be forced to foot the bill.
We have reported on our Marijuana Lawyer Blog regarding some of the issue’s high-profile supporters, including the California NAACP (disproportionate number of African-American arrests) and the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, which hopes to recruit new members.
Some grow operations, which produce the medical marijuana now legally sold in the state, fear they will be pushed out by large grow operations started by big tobacco and even some cities –Oakland is exploring the possibility of operating an industrial growing operation.
Meanwhile, federal officials are warily eying the possibility of passage.
“We have a federal Controlled Substances Act. Marijuana is on that list,” said Gil Kerlikowske, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy.
Some are concerned that the feds, who have taken a hands-off approach to enforcing federal anti-marijuana laws when it comes to states that have passed medical marijuana initiatives — could become more heavy-handed if California straight-up legalizes the drug. Such a move would not only throw sand in the face of the federal government, it could provide a legitimate supply of marijuana within the United States, which in turn would fuel the illegal marijuana market in the other 49 states.
One thing is certain: whatever the outcome of the ballot initiative in November, the fight will be far from over. Los Angeles continues to try to outlaw the legal medical marijuana business and that ballot initiative has long-since become law. Legitimate marijuana businesses will need an aggressive and experienced law firm to protect their rights, whatever the outcome of November’s vote.
The CANNABIS LAW GROUP is a law firm dedicated to the rights of medical marijuana patients, collectives and growers and has built a reputation for high-powered, aggressive legal representation of the medical marijuana industry in Southern California. Call 714-937-2050 for a confidential consultation to discuss your rights.