While the rest of the country was busy pushing for the re-election of President Barack Obama, voters in the states of Colorado and Washington pulled the lever in favor of a new measure that sought to decriminalize and regulate the possession of marijuana. Now with weed becoming legal in the sprawling state of Washington, another celebration is certain to be in store.
Pro-pot advocates have been in support of the measures for months leading up to Election Day, and revelers in the Northwest partied in the expected fashion – but according to a Seattle Times article, the measure might be extinguished by the powers that be in the Nation's Capital.
Initiative 502 passed with 56 percent of the vote going into the “yes” column. Under the rule, the possession of weed in an amount that does not exceed an ounce will not net a charge. The state hasn't turned into a cannabis utopia, however, as public smoking of the drug is akin to a fine similar to public drinking. The Times reports that some elected officials who represent the state in the Senate and the House of Representatives are not enthused by the measure's passage. The law contrasts greatly with federal drug policy, which says marijuana is a controlled substance and worthy of yielding an arrest.
In the wee hours of the morning underneath the iconic Space Needle tower in Seattle, gatherers counted down to midnight and toked up to celebrate the passing of the measure. The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) group has been especially emboldened by this passage, stating in their blog that the government will not block the law and that the political machinations occurring are merely cosmetic.
This is just a hunch, but expect housing and potato chip sales to spike a bit in the Evergreen State in the coming weeks.