Pubdate: Wed, 16 May 2012
Source: Summit Daily News (CO)
Copyright: 2012 Summit Daily News
Author: Garnett Payne


Re. "Pot should remain illegal" by Xander Vinogradov, letters, May

At the risk of sounding condescending, I'm proud of you, Mr.
Vinogradov for standing ground in your support for keeping marijuana
illegal, despite the influence of your "rasta-wearing blunt smoking"
peers! I'm a local middle school mom (probably old enough to be your
mother) who shares your concerns about the impact of hastily drafted
and difficult-to-enforce regulations regarding marijuana cultivation
and use. Three years ago, as a Michigan resident, I was among the
minority who voted against legalizing medical marijuana. At the time,
Colorado and California were leading the charge, and the people of
Michigan followed. Having lived here for two years now, my warnings to
out-of-state friends about the unintended consequences of their
decisions at the ballot box are data based.

As a parent, I am alarmed and frustrated about the bombardment of ads
and the accessibility of marijuana in our communities and, like Mr.
Vinogradov, am embarrassed about the impact on our Colorado culture.
I'm especially concerned about the availability and marketing of the
edible products. My daughter can "just say no" to alcohol or
cigarettes, but how am I supposed to warn her against accidentally
enjoying marijuana Rice Krispie treats at a party?

Mr. Vinogradov's peers should take the short drive south on Hwy. 9
over Hoosier Pass to Alma, the "highest" town in America. This quaint
mountain town with 275 residences has at least three (some people say
five) dispensaries and who knows how many potted plants in people's
homes! Recently, the Park County Flume reported that the Alma Town
Council passed a regulation that will require renters to get
permission from their landlords before they grow marijuana in their
homes. Apparently, multiple landlords have complained about damage
from the cultivation activities - including holes in the dry wall and
even carpet that was covered in dirt and seeded to grow the plants!
The measure passed narrowly, as property values probably dropped
another notch.

I hope myself and my fellow Coloradans will listen, observe, speak out
and make informed decisions the next time we are a faced with an
opportunity to regulate the use of marijuana, medical or otherwise. I
pray it's not too late for Alma. Thanks Mr. Vinogradov of reminding us
how important this issue is, and not being afraid to speak out against
what seems right now to be the inevitable legalization of marijuana.

Garnett Payne
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