The budding Cannabis industry opened its doors, legally, in Oregon today. Some shops actually opened for business shortly after the strike of midnight, when the new law making Cannabis legal for those over twenty-one years old went into effect. More than two hundred and fifty new small businesses are opening up across Oregon to participate in the newly regulated market.
Hey Republicans, this is real job creation — not lowering taxes on corporations and billionaires.
Colorado, Washington, now Oregon, and Alaska as soon as next year are the only states that currently allow recreational sales of Cannabis, due mainly to decades worth of propaganda from the failed so-called “War on Drugs.”
Critics of Marijuana sales warned in Colorado, then in Washington, that selling the drug recreationally would cause crime to sky-rocket. It didn’t, crime actually went down, not just for property crime, but violent crime as well. According to this study by the Drug Policy Alliance:
According to statistics compiled by the DPA, in the first 11 months of 2014, the rate of violent crime fell 2.2 percent compared with the same period in 2013. In the same time frame, burglaries in Colorado’s capital, Denver, decreased by 9.5 percent and overall property crime decreased by 8.9 percent.
Further, arrests for marijuana possession have continually dropped since 2010 and are now down roughly 84 percent.
Add that to the fact that Colorado schools have already earned over 60 MILLION dollars just this year.
Taxes in Oregon do not kick in until January, allowing the new stores to sell at substantial discounts for the next few months.
Oregon’s laws for recreational cannabis allow customers to buy up to seven grams at a time of dried marijuana flower and leaf, plus plants and seeds. For the next year or so, cannabis-infused candy, cookies, oils and lotions will be available only to people with medical marijuana cards while the state works on retail regulations for them.
Also, luckily for Oregon consumers and small businesses alike, there is a better supply available to retail shops then there was in Colorado when they legalized. This means that the price hikes and store shortages that were seen shortly after legalization in Colorado may not be an issue in Oregon.
Crime is down, schools are getting paid in a serious way and the economy is flourishing in states that have allowed the sale of recreational cannabis. With 5 states set to vote in 2015 and 2016 a lot more kids are gonna have a chance at better education in states enjoying the benefits of ending the prohibition on a seriously beneficial plant that got a bad name.
Here is a short video talking about the financial side of the benefits of legalization in Colorado:
Feature image via SnowBrains