Celebrations as US state legalizes marijuana

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In this Nov. 19, 2012 photo, seedling marijuana plants are displayed for sale for those who posses a medical marijuana card, inside a dispensary in the small Rocky Mountain town of Nederland, Colo. Colorado and Washington, which on Nov. 6, 2012 legalized the recreational use of marijuana, have a history with marijuana law reform. More than a decade ago, they were among the first to approve its medical use. AP/Brennan Linsley

SEATTLE — Legal marijuana possession becomes a reality under Washington state law on Thursday, and some people planned to celebrate the new law by breaking it.

Voters in Washington and Colorado last month made those the first states to decriminalize and regulate the recreational use of marijuana. Washington’s law takes effect Thursday and allows adults to have up to an ounce of pot — but it bans public use of marijuana, which is punishable by a fine, just like drinking in public.

Nevertheless, some people planned to gather at 12 a.m. Thursday to smoke up in public beneath Seattle’s Space Needle. Others planned a midnight party outside the Seattle headquarters of Hempfest, the 21-year-old festival that attracts tens of thousands of pot fans every summer.

“This is a big day because all our lives we’ve been living under the iron curtain of prohibition,” said Hempfest director Vivian McPeak. “The whole world sees that prohibition just took a body blow.”

Seattle Police spokesman Sgt. Sean Whitcomb said he doesn’t expect officers to write many tickets to the celebrants. Thanks to a 2003 law, marijuana enforcement remains the department’s lowest priority. Even before Initiative 502 passed on Nov. 6, police rarely busted people at Hempfest, despite widespread pot use, and the city attorney here doesn’t prosecute people for having small amounts of marijuana.

Washington’s new law decriminalizes possession of up to an ounce for those over 21, but for now selling marijuana remains illegal. I-502 gives the state a year to come up with a system of state-licensed growers, processors and retail stores, with the marijuana taxed 25 percent at each stage. Analysts have estimated that a legal pot market could bring Washington hundreds of millions of dollars a year in new tax revenue for schools, health care and basic government functions.

But marijuana remains illegal under federal law. That means federal agents can still arrest people for it, and it’s banned from federal properties, including military bases and national parks.

The Justice Department has not said whether it will sue to try to block the regulatory schemes in Washington and Colorado from taking effect.

“The department’s responsibility to enforce the Controlled Substances Act remains unchanged,” said a statement issued Wednesday by the Seattle U.S. attorney’s office. “Neither states nor the executive branch can nullify a statute passed by Congress” — a non-issue, since the measures passed in Washington and Colorado don’t “nullify” federal law, which federal agents remain free to enforce.

The legal question is whether the establishment of a regulated marijuana market would “frustrate the purpose” of the federal pot prohibition, and many constitutional law scholars say it very likely would.

That leaves the political question of whether the administration wants to try to block the regulatory system, even though it would remain legal to possess up to an ounce of marijuana.

Colorado’s measure, as far as decriminalizing possession goes, is set to take effect by Jan. 5. That state’s regulatory scheme is due to be up and running by October 2013.

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  • phantomofhope

    God! US is a mess! 

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NHNF5WN3EEUACZ2FXDRQL7SHVA redbeard

      And the Philippines is doing so well ? i dont see many coming back to live from here when they have there green card! LOL

  • JuanTamadachi

    About time the Americans learned something from their prohibition era..

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZWTTKJTI57YO7TZBJC66GA2OLU dennis

    This will spell downfall of US when it terms of “Diplomatic and International Relation” with other Nations!…Another is “When US sneezes,Philippines get sick!”

    • JuanTamadachi

      ??

  • CyberPinoy

    Washington and Colorado will also be called “the state of weeds”. 

  • wgd82

    parte parte!!!!

  • boypalaban

    shotgun pare….

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZWTTKJTI57YO7TZBJC66GA2OLU dennis

    “The legal question is whether the establishment of a regulated marijuana market would “frustrate the purpose” of the federal pot prohibition, and many constitutional law scholars say it very likely would.”…..Of Course! As long as you have questions to be answer,then there is always a doubt behind it! The issue here would be the mutual exchange of priviledge between neighboring states “reciprocity law”? You cannot separate Federal Criminals from State Criminals.

  • Rolly257

    All other illegal drugs should be legalized as well, but controlled and regulated by the government. Problems with addicts and pushers will eventually eliminated.

    • AlexanderAmproz

      Obviously, it’s the only way,
      but the one enjoying drugs business are the corrupt Lawmakers
      and officials all around the country, it’s already a cancer,
      beware the metastases !

      Shabu is an 800 Billions business, in case of legalization,
      in witch field do the officials mafias will move ?
      This should be considered.

  • regd

    Next will be heroin, then meths. If all things go well, legalized sodomy, rape, infanticide etc. Why stop there? Sky is the limit for this morally bankrupt nation! What else is new?

    • AlexanderAmproz

      Are you thinking about Shabu, abundant pedophiliacs, not only by the moral leaders
      from the Churches.
      Never saw a country so obsess by moral values transgressing them systematically 
      all the time, by proud alcoholics on Erap style, 
      proud liars, cheaters, killers, looters, 
      systematically plunders on the widest scale, GMA Pajero’s envelopes Gang 
      among many others more evil Gang’s Ampatuan’s/Palparan’s 
      or the cheap arrogance and uneducated Mafiosi taste of the Marcoses
      served by an uneducated populace admiration.

      A Failed Country run by the world worst crooks,
      self protected as they own the Country by prolific corruptions

      • boypalaban

        ….at condom at marijuana pala ang sagot sa lahat ng problema dito…galing ng logic mo…tira ka muna ulit ng shabu baka mahimasmasan ka…

  • AlexanderAmproz

    Since about 1970, 40 years ago,

    Marijuana(cannabis) became legal in Holland !
    Nederland is the world most social progressive Country since hundreds years,
    the most develop in almost every fields, public health, economy, universities, etc.
    About Marijuana, nothing, but nothing under any health or social,
    had any consequences outside very bad smoking effects, like for any cigarettes.

    In Switzerland, an other model society,
    Marijuana is tolerated since long time,but not yet legalize,
    thank’s the back-warders ultra right and religious black Catholic’s,
    narrow minded mountains and remote places peoples.

    In the Philippines, as it is a remote place, 
    it will take an other 150 years to open the mind and eyes on that taboo subject,
    probably same in any society at same stage of societal developments.

    Compare to Holland or Switzerland, 
    the Philippines are hundreds years backward in any fields, 
    at least with the Feudal system running at the moment,
    looking slavery with fake text books, with everything up side down
    producing absolute atrocious sufferances toward the population.
    (death squad, private armies, un-efficient Justice, starvation,logging, landslide, dynamite fishing, killings, kidnappings,prosperous viruses and bacterias, in short the uneducated wild west)

    Easy to understand why the sin taxes and RH bill taking so much time,
    the Lawmakers and Clergy are not only No. 1 sinners poorly educated,
    but bought and sold to the most disgusting Oligarchy.

    Very, very sad in a such gifted and friendly place, run by abusers explaining,
    what is right is wrong and opposite to serve narrow minded and selfish interests.

    It’s an insult to God, in case God is existing for an other purpose,
    than the use done in this Beautiful Archipelago,
    keeping the masses as backward as possible to maintain undue Gang’s privileges !

    • boypalaban

      tamang tama…tira ka muna ng marijuana bago ka yumari at magsuot ng condom…
      sablay pangangatwiran mo…tulog ka muna…overdose yan ng shabu hindi marijuana…

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/6NVJE4NYLGDSCO6KQ4GWP35SVM Macario

    Land of the Free and the Brave, let’s see what’s legal:

    Marijuana, same sex marriage, abortion- Sodom and Gomorrah

    • AlexanderAmproz

      Did you forget that the Philippines are probably at the tip
      of the Sodom and Gomorrah Pyramid, electing Erap isn’t proof enough,
      under house arrest with at least 50 cases of death penalty,
      pardoned by a small disgusting PRESIDENT, enjoying to have
      plunder the poorest of the poor.

      Macario, what are you doing with your country, did your nose still out of the sewage ?

  • kilabot

    agenda. 
    the world agenda is to make the abnormal the new normal; 
    1) drugs; 
    2) same-sex marriage; 
    3) man-beast union; 
    4) prostitution; 

    the agenda is being pushed around the world; 
    some countries have already legalized one or more of the agenda items; 
    the push is intensifying; targeting world leaders and people of influence; 
    obama, clinton and carter have fallen; the whole usa may fall soon; 

    everything will be redefined; 
    $sodomy becomes love; bestialisex is affection; 
    a junkie is chic; a prostitute is enterprising; 

    the idea is to make the world one big orgy; all people thinking and acting alike; 
    in the forefront are anus and ashole; in opposition are penes and pusi; 
    choose which side you are on; fence-sitting not allowed; 

    legend: 
    anus   – advocates for neurotic unnatural sex; 
    ashole – assn of homogeneous loathsome egos; 
    penes  – public enterprise on natural ecological sex; 
    pusi   – proper use of sex initiative;

    • AlexanderAmproz

      Have a look to the world top cities in the world for life quality,
      chose few among the best, and ask at your self why ?
      If too difficult, do it again and again in front a mirror, 
      don’t stop before a total understanding of the differences like,
      between HK and Manila Airport, giving the best smell of way of life
      witch one is dirty, witch one can be set as an example for honesty & security

      Have a joint and relax (never in Asia), but in Amsterdam and
      some others, among the most advanced society,

      no death squad at sight, but an excellent life expectancy !

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NYRtmMxB5yw CrossWinds

    Matthew 24:12
    Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold……….

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/2DG3R2AAQZDON2KH45T3YC5DOA del pillar

    In general “marijuana” used is bad, if it has exception it does not justify the move that it be legalized.. Time will certainly come that those who made it legal will repent why the hell is within them! (Se tagalog “ang pagsisisi ay palaging sa huli”). If ever there is/are medicinal values that we can get from “marijana” let it then past the experiment and test that is/are necessary!!!!

    • AlexanderAmproz

      Holland doing it since 40 years without any repentances.
      May I remember that Holland is the most socially and economically
      advance country. A permanent successful place since 500 Years,
      as well Switzerland !

      But I agree, that what can be applied in a developed Country,
      can’t be applied automatically in an under developed Place as
      the prevalent education condition don’t exist and will never exist
      as long there are fake text book’s and corruption,
      inexistent in Holland, Switzerland and northern Protestant Europe,
      question of MORAL values and ETHICS.

      None Pinoy’s are able at the moment, to teach them anything 
      on societal development, so backward and failed are RP !

      Still Philippines is a Wonderful and lovely Place, but not on those points,
      only peoples are so nice, ironically, less educated are better by far,
      as less educated by this disgusting rapist system.
      Honesty and fair play, sense of Justice are naturally existing at the birth,
      before to have been deeply perverted by a tricky colonial Clergy.

  • LuwigVonMises

    even in prison the government can’t prevent drugs from entering in. now they dare to police us all from it. what the people demands they get it. its the law of demand and supply not even the most powerful nation in the world  can do a thing about it in fact it is slowly but surely giving up from this none sense. it is really stupid to let the government protect us from our own self. and do we really have to wait before the U.S will eventually legalize marijuana completely before we do it to. what will that make us a “monkey see monkey do”.  a lot of people die because of fatty foods, junk foods, alcohol, smoking, colas, ect.. so why don’t we criminalize them too. why is it that drugs are unfairly discriminated.      this thing is really simple if only most people can realize it. that you have to suffer the consequence of your actions and that is that.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NHNF5WN3EEUACZ2FXDRQL7SHVA redbeard

    Seems like the people in the Philippines are 50 years behind the rest of the world! judging from some people here, who believe to much government propaganda 

    God made cannabis along with many other plants. the only people guilty of sin and ignorance are people who would throw you in jail for enjoying a  natural non addictive plant, rather than many dangerous and addictive man made drugs! go read up and educate yourselves .

    Plaese read the bible to.

    Genesis 1:29 ▻. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is on the face of all the earth…. 

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