But the reality is that the medical marijuana law has resulted in almost de facto legalization.
Thus, from a governmental point of view, what is the proper regulation of the stuff?
Alcohol and tobacco are heavily regulated and taxed and proponents of prop 19 say that they want to see marijuana moved into the same category.
Did the drafters of Prop 19 do a good job?
I figured the newspaper that is most likely to support legalization of marijuana is the San Francisco Chronicle.
And guess what?
They came out against Prop 19. Excerpt:
Even Californians who support the legalization of marijuana should be extremely wary of Proposition 19. This is a seriously flawed initiative with contradictions and complications that would invite legal chaos and, more than likely, fail to deliver its promised economic benefits.I call for a NO vote on Prop 19.
Among the specific problems:
Workplace: A nondiscrimination clause would prevent employers from firing or disciplining workers who used marijuana unless an employer could prove that job performance was impaired. Pre-employment testing would be banned. Conflicts with federal law abound. For example, the feds require operators of planes, trains, trucks and buses to be removed from their jobs if they test positive for any narcotic.
Tax and regulation: The measure establishes no state controls over distribution and product standards ... Prop. 19 allows the 58 counties and hundreds of cities to come up with their own taxation and regulatory schemes. In this critical element of legalization, Prop. 19 is more akin to the chaotic approach taken with medical marijuana than to the heavily taxed-and-regulated treatment of alcohol.
Cultivation: Property owners throughout the state would have a right to establish a 5-by-5-foot plot of cannabis plants for personal consumption - a right that could not be usurped by local ordinance. Anyone familiar with the stench and potential height of marijuana plants might pause at the thought of their proliferation in the neighborhood.
Transit: The proposition does not affect current laws against driving while impaired by cannabis, but it does allow passengers to smoke in a moving vehicle, proponents acknowledge. This is another element of 219 that that defies common sense.