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Sorry California marijuana addicts but the Los Angeles City Council is no longer supporting your habit. Last Tuesday, the Los Angeles City Council voted in favor of banning all marijuana shops and dispensaries throughout the city.  The ban eliminates storefronts, but patients and caregivers are still allowed to grow medical marijuana. Patients who have legal prescriptions can grow up to one plant and distribute it up to three people. This baffles me! Legalized pot growing? Ummm ok!

I’m not sure why the pot shops were legalized to begin with. Did the city really think that these places of business would foster a safe environment for the local community? Why are they surprised that hundreds of shops popped up and people were walking around high throughout the community? What does this mean for the local economy, how will it be affected by the loss of small business? I’m not sure but I do know one thing once the major signs the ordinance those shops will only have 30 days to shut down shop.

I can imagine the signs now,” Get your ganja while you can! Going out of business SALE!”

Jeez!

As absurd as it might sound, theses business owners might be able to sue the city for closing them down. They have legal backing from California courts in the 1996 approval of medical marijuana use with a doctor’s recommendation. Why can’t they be the suppliers for those patients?

Washington Post reports that, “state Supreme Court has decided to clarify the drug’s hazy legal status by addressing whether local governments can ban medical marijuana clinics, but a hearing has yet to be set. Meanwhile, federal authorities have cracked down on pot clinics around the state, saying such operations remain illegal under U.S. law. Los Angeles passed an ordinance two years ago that was supposed to shutter hundreds of pot dispensaries while capping the number in operation at 70. But legal challenges from collectives and that ordinance’s expiration last month led to another surge of pot shops”.

Marijuana making its way into the headlines is nothing new for us. Lately synthetic drugs like Bath Salts and Spice have been mentioned in the media quite often. People are constantly looking for new ways to get high. The thing about drugs is that they’re always going to be readily available and some seem to remain in the forefront no matter how much prevention or awareness is given on their negative health effects. Two of the most commonly abused drugs are alcohol and marijuana. Drugs are usually associated with celebration and fun so it is seen as harmless. We know better than that, for some the ability to know when you’ve had enough is non-existent.

Marijuana aka Mary Jane, weed, ganja, and reefer, whatever you want to call it – is that green herb that never quite goes away. Many teenagers are reverting to smoking weed instead of cigarettes, which is a big shift in the smoking trend. Back in June the CDC reported that 23% of teens recently smoked marijuana as opposed to 18% of teens who recently smoked cigarettes.

There are normally two schools of thought when it comes to the marijuana debate:

  • marijuana is natural so it can’t be bad for you

AND

  • marijuana is a mood altering substance that negatively affects memory, judgment and perception.

Someone more or less put it to me like this one day, marijuana is an “insidious” drug that seems harmless at first but creeps up on you later on in life. One day you’re a 16 year old kid experimenting with weed and the next thing you know you wake up a 35 year old man on your mom’s couch not knowing what to do with your life or if it’s too late to even start.

Don’t let that be you.

If you or someone you know needs treatment for marijuana drug abuse please give our crisis counselors a call at 877-711-4673. Our crisis counselors are there to answer your call 24/7!

 

Sources:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/25/us/california-council-bans-marijuana-dispensaries.html

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/los-angeles-city-council-votes-to-ban-hundreds-of-marijuana-dispensaries/2012/07/24/gJQAl5Xe7W_story.html

 

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