Editorial: Be responsible with your marijuana
July 8, 2014
No matter how you feel about it, it’s now legal to purchase and smoke it in the state of Washington. (Leave it to officials to sort out the federal vs. state issue, though at this point, no one has announced plans to crack down on people who take a toke.)
And although there is not yet a local place to make a purchase, 24 retailers in the Puget Sound area were granted licenses this week by the state Liquor Control Board.
A majority of voters wanted marijuana, and now we all have it. In order to turn that initiative and vote into a real win, people must be responsible with their pot.
Don’t share your weed with your teenaged son or daughter. Marijuana for anyone under 21 is still illegal.
Don’t leave your stash out where your pets can get into it. Veterinarians are already treating pets that have eaten pot. (And don’t blow the smoke into their faces. It isn’t humane to get an animal high.)
Just as driving drunk is illegal, driving stoned is illegal. Police have received training to be able to identify people under the influence of marijuana — you will be caught. So, be patient and don’t take a hit on the way home. And purchase your Doritos on the way home or call for takeout when you get the munchies.
Don’t smoke in public. Part of the initiative states you can only partake in private — not at a park or restaurant.
Don’t buy in bulk. Possession of up to one ounce is legal (or up to 16 ounces in a solid form or 72 ounces in a liquid form), anything more is too much.
If you don’t smoke, no one is going to force you to, but you might see some benefits.
The state estimates marijuana could bring in up to $2 billion in tax revenue over the next five years. Whether you smoke or not, you should be pleased that social services may be saved, children may get better educations and roads may get fixed with more money available in the piggybank.
Along with Colorado, we’re engaging in an experiment in how well this can work. Let’s set a positive national example.