So far in the battle for successful marijuana legalization, the major victories have been restricted to the western half of the country: Colorado, Washington, and Alaska. But soon enough, a representative of the East Coast will be able to add its name to the list of like-minded, progressive thinkers. The District of Columbia will be moving forward with plans to legalize marijuana possession, growth, and use. Read on to learn more about the stipulations of this new measure in the nation’s capital.
Voters in Washington, D.C. approved the initiative to legalize pot and despite the efforts of Congress to block it from going forward. This broader-scale legalization is the next logical step for the District to take after it decriminalized pot possession last year. But as marijuana legalization is still very much in its infant stages, there are restrictions in place that will be important for people to adhere to in order to avoid criminal charges.
What Are the Exact Details of D.C.’s Legalization Plan?
As of this week (February 26, to be precise), individuals who are 21 and older will be able to possess up to two ounces of marijuana, as well as grow up to three mature marijuana plants in their own homes for personal use. Distribution and sales of marijuana remains illegal; the District of Columbia will not be regulating or taxing marijuana, as this would be in violation of federal law. Instead, the basic premise of D.C.’s legalization plan is that people will be able to grow and/or use marijuana in the privacy of their own homes, but not in public. This legalization measure, though limited, is nevertheless a positive step for D.C. to be taking.
Will D.C.’s Marijuana Legalization Face Challenges?
As is the case with the majority of progressive and forward-thinking policies, marijuana legalization will always face criticism and backlash. In the nation’s capital, these negative voices are easy to hear; because D.C. laws are subject to a congressional review, anti-legalization Republicans and even private citizens could potentially launch a legal challenge to these new laws. But despite their objections, marijuana legalization looks to be in good shape for the foreseeable future. People are already noting that by legalizing small amounts of pot, law enforcement can free up time and resources to be focused on more serious crimes, and legalization also reduces the strain put on the prison system.
Marijuana legalization is steadily gaining support nationwide, and if our capital city has approved it, it can only be a matter of time before other states follow suit.
Bruce Robinson & Associates
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