Marijuana Policy Shifting in California

California might finally begin to see a significant shift in its marijuana policy and regulations.

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Our Los Angeles marijuana lawyers have seen a shift in the landscape of marijuana legalization after nearly two decades of the substance being legal for medical use in California.

Although the debate is still contentious with serious arguments on both sides, the idea of legalization is gaining wider acceptance.

An increasing number of recent polls suggest that the American public is becoming more in favor of the legalization of marijuana. Not only that, but there is more support now than ever for legalization for purposes beyond healthcare, including recreational use.

While California’s Democratic party has voted to support efforts toward regulating, taxing, and legalizing marijuana for a variety of purposes, it is clear that there is still some debate, even within the same political parties.

Several Democrats have stated their concern that legalization will lead to a loss of focus with too many people “getting high”, and allowing the state to suffer. Even so, the majority of polls indicate that the American public believes that legalization is the answer to the long-running problem.

The American public isn’t the only group to have shifted toward legalizing marijuana, as law enforcement agencies have now began supporting the change as well. One of the primary reasons for the shift in law enforcement support is because law enforcement leaders feel a need for a better handle on managing the issue of marijuana.

A poll provided to the California Police Chiefs Association indicated that 90 percent of Chiefs were in favor of legislation legalizing marijuana for that very reason. The issue goes beyond personal opinion to a matter of what is responsible as public safety leaders.

The shift in opinion, support, and legislation is also vital for California business owners, growers, collectives, and physicians. Unlike other states, California has not yet constructed a legal framework that will handle some of the major issues that still plague the business end of the marijuana debate.

Currently, city and county regulations are sparring with state and federal regulations, and there is no consistency. The overarching goal is not to take local control away from city and county regulators, but to find a healthy balance that will be beneficial to all parties.

The competing concerns remain violating Civil Rights or creating problems for law enforcement, lawmakers, businesses, physicians, and mostly, the people who could substantially benefit from the proper use of marijuana.

Even states that once championed zero-tolerance laws against marijuana use have started to take a more lenient approach and accepting that the plant has merit in the world of medicine.

In fact, even conservative Georgia has placed legislation before the Governor (HB885) to allow medical marijuana use. The shift in the debate, and the increasing support for legalization and awareness could be a very positive shift for California, and one that could see results in the near future.

More Blog Entries:

United States Marijuana Laws Influencing Other Countries, February 14, 2014, Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer Blog
Cannabiz May Finally Be Able to Use the U.S. Banking System , February 13, 2014, Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer Blog