Pubdate: Sun, 11 Aug 2013
Source: Herald, The (Everett, WA)
Copyright: 2013 The Daily Herald Co.
Author: Jackson Totty


This letter is in response to Bruce King's comments in the Monday 
Herald about pot farming. ("Hearings to help set marijuana 
policies.") Mr. King's quotes in the article the Herald ran about him 
on Jan. 2, show he has no business opining on this subject: "I've 
never smoked pot..." and "If I choose to grow it, I will screw up my 
first crop, maybe my first 10 crops."

Now this complete novice is concerned about the effects of medical 
marijuana on "his" potential profits. How in the world does it make 
sense for a man with admittedly no experience in this industry to be 
worried about losing money to people who actually know what they are 
doing? Mr. King's participation in this debate is absurd, and it 
sheds light on the ridiculous approach that our state is taking with 
the implementation of initiative 502.

The medical marijuana industry is made up of professional pot people 
who have devoted their lives to this plant and its cultivation. 
Further, the people of the medical marijuana industry are the true 
pioneers of legalization. We would not be where we are without the 
groundwork laid by these hard working activists. The argument that it 
is an illicit market is mostly anecdotal, and ignores the fact that 
it operates under law that is on the books in Washington.

Colorado's legalization bill closely followed their medical marijuana 
model, and guess what? It was fully implemented over a month ago. 
Colorado basically just let the pros keep doing their jobs and were 
able to easily enact their new laws. The idea that Washington feels 
it's good policy to cut out the people that know what they are doing 
and have been running a successful model of this industry shows 
questionable judgement at best. Also, the medical marijuana community 
has bent over backwards in attempts to work with the state on 
solutions that allow both venues to operate. The state's response has 
been to use one brush to paint all medical patients as criminals or 
fakers. I expect more from my elected officials than to throw all 
legitimate patients under the bus because some might not be, and it's 
even more unconscionable to do so because their medicine might 
threaten the state's pot profits.

Reasonable solutions that allow both markets to coexist are readily 
available and are currently on display in Colorado. This issue is way 
bigger than tax revenue forecasts and I'd like to think our state 
legislators are nuanced enough thinkers to see it as such. 
Implementing 502 at the expense of the medical marijuana community is 
literally placing profits over people, and giving the industry to 
complete (and admitted) novices like Bruce King places clownish 
idiocy over common sense.

Jackson Totty

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