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Smoke A Joint In Their Shoes

Dr. Michele Ross

Dr. Michele Ross

As each new year arrives, I try not to hold my resolutions to high standards. Let’s face it, a “New Year’s resolution” rarely lasts more than 10 days. So, as 2015 rolled in, my goal for the following 365 days would be to show more gratitude for the things that I have access to each day. A warm bed. Being able to feed Snacks and Meatball, my two cats. Clean water. And, lastly, legal cannabis.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my job in the cannabis industry. However, I can’t tell you how often I hear deep sighs of disappointment and patrons complaining. I mean, come on now! In the great state of Colorado you can not only buy cannabis legally, but smoke it, too.

In my personal experience, paying sales tax on a $35 eighth of organic grown-with-love cannabis from a charming college aged girl is better than buying dirt brown flower in a gas station parking lot from a guy who won’t even tell me his  name. So, the next time you visit a dispensary, consider what you’re life would be like if you were “caught” with 14 grams of cannabis in another state which anyone of  legal age can possess without punishment.

  1. Texas: You’re looking at 180 days in prison and $2,000 in fines. And, just a heads up, if you possess more than 4 ounces, it’s a felony with 2 years and $10,000 in fines. Look forward to seeing a medical bill in the next legislative session. But, seriously though, don’t mess with Texas.
  2. Illinois: Although carrying 30 grams (just a bit more than an ounce) is a misdemeanor, you may land in prison for a whole year. Over 30 grams and it’s a felony with 3 years and $25,000 in fines. Mayor Emanuel is pushing for decriminalization so you better register to vote.
  3. Pennsylvania: With only 30 grams, you’ll find yourself with 30 days in jail and a $500 fine. Any more than that, you’re locked up for a year and $5,000 in fines. Fingers crossed for medical marijuana to pass with Pennsylvania’s new governor!
  4. Vermont: Although sporting medical cannabis since 2002, possessing up to an ounce of recreational (illegal) flower in this green state will land you a $200 fine. Look forward to the legalization in 2017 as Vermont is currently pre-occupied with battling Monsanto. Until then, enjoy that Starbucks latte, America.
  5. Wyoming: Simply being high will land you 90 days in jail. Good luck with that.

I’m not asking you to stop voicing your opinion, because, it really does matter. Our voices is how we got to where we are now, passing joints to the neighbors in our living rooms as easy as pouring them glasses of wine. I’m just requesting that you show gratitude, patience, and pride in what comes to us naturally these days. Cheers to you, friend. And, welcome 2015, I think we are going to be great friends.

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