Oakland Legalizes marijuana farming

LaCi - posted on 07/22/2010 ( 50 moms have responded )

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Just thought I'd share.



It’s a place where medical marijuana is already legal, and pot dispensaries are wedged between clothing boutiques and coffee shops. It’s got a marijuana university, Oaksterdam, where attendees can learn the ins and outs of pot politics, horticulture, cooking, even “budtending.” And a year ago, Oakland became the first city in the nation to tax its pot dispensaries, in a kind of hippie-meets-"the man" effort to get the city out of the red.



So while opponents may see the city's latest move as one more notch on the slippery slope, it’s no big surprise that local politicians took Oakland's pot policy one step further this week, approving large-scale, industrial farming that advocates believe could net the cash-strapped city a whopping $38 million each year.



Approved 5–2 by the City Council on Tuesday, the measure will grant industrial cultivation licenses to four lucky growers, in plots that can be as large as 100,000 square feet. Applicants will have to pay a $5,000 administrative fee, $211,000 for an annual permit, and then, of course, they’ll be taxed on their sales come January: Oakland levies 1.8 percent on cannabis sales now, and the tax is likely to rise to as much as 12 percent.



Marijuana consumption—for medical use—has been legal in California since 1996, when voters passed Proposition 215. But "medicinal" is something of an open joke in the state, where anyone older than 18 with a doctor's note—easy to get for ailments like anxiety or cramps, if you're willing to pay—can obtain an ID card allowing access to any of the state's hundreds of dispensaries. ("You can basically get a doctor's recommendation for anything," one dispensary told me last October, when I visited his pot shop.) Not all of those dispensaries are legally recognized, however: there's a growing discrepancy over how California's laws mesh (or don't) with local and federal regulations. But Oakland is unique in that it has four licensed and regulated dispensaries. Approved by 80 percent of voters last July—and unopposed by any organization (including law enforcement)—the tax was pushed by the dispensary owners themselves, who hoped the model would prove to the rest of California that a regulated marijuana industry can be both profitable and responsible. "The reality is we're creating jobs, improving the city, filling empty store spaces, and when people come down here to Oakland they can see that," says Richard Lee, the founder of Oaksterdam and the owner of a number of local dispensaries.



The newest measure, meanwhile, has pitted small-scale “garden” growers against those who favor a bigger system they believe will reduce reliance on large-scale drug cartels, ensure a high-quality product, and help cut down on rampant crime among bootleg growers. But the reality is that, while all of that may be true, Oakland can't help but see dollar signs.



Advocates have estimated that the newest measure could make Oakland—which faces a $83 million budget deficit this year—the provider of nearly a quarter of the pot consumed by Californians. The state's residents, meanwhile burn through 175 tons of legal marijuana each year. (Do we need to do the math?)



To put the icing on the cake, just imagine what could happen if the public votes to legalize recreational marijuana—a measure, sponsored by one of Oakland's own, that will appear on the November ballot. Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron has estimated that cannabis prohibition costs the nation $7 billion in potential tax revenue; Oakland City Council member Rebecca Kaplan has said the revenue already being generated by the current tax will help save libraries, parks, and other public services. If that's the case, advocates contend, doesn't a taxation measure make simple economic sense? "People are no longer outraged by the idea of legalization," former San Francisco mayor Willie Brown told San Francisco Chronicle last year. "And truth be told, there is just too much money to be made both by the people who grow marijuana and the cities and counties that would be able to tax it." If Oakland has anything to do with it, it's high time the rest of California sees just that.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Charlie - posted on 07/22/2010

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Most addicts are addicted to the cigarette or "spin" that is added to the weed people who continue to smoke weed do so because they enjoy the high and are not necessarily addicted , really the issue of addiction is easily applied to many legal pharmaceutical drugs that marijuana could be substituted for such as Oxycontin , highly addictive and more dangerous than Marijuana and is widely used illegally by many people .

Medicines are drugs by definition.
drug (drg)
n.
1.
a. A substance used in the diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of a disease or as a component of a medication.
b. Such a substance as recognized or defined by the U.S. Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.
2. A chemical substance, such as a narcotic or hallucinogen, that affects the central nervous system, causing changes in behavior and often addiction.
3. Obsolete A chemical or dye.

LaCi - posted on 07/23/2010

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LOL. So I was posting proposition 19, but I realized it was RIDICULOUSLY long and would take up way too much space on the board. SO here's the link to normals breakdown.



http://stash.norml.org/californias-prop-...



It will be legal to have a 25 sq ft marijuana garden per residence. You can not be arrested for one ounce or less of marijuana. The bill DOES allow for taxation or marijuana, but in itself doesn't put an amount on it. That, from what I see in the bill is a city decision, and a city may also prohibit sales within city limits, but possession is still legal. A 25 sq foot space can hold enough plants for personal use.



The guy who was involved in getting the industrial farms legalized in Oakland will be selling his weed for $40 an ounce, the estimated tax is $50 per ounce, that's 90 an ounce. Add on a 12% sales tax in shops and you're only looking at around 100 per ounce which is 25% the current cost of marijuana.. the remainder of the cost will be the shops decision.



The bill itself also places no restrictions on edibles, etc. "(i) “Marijuana” and “cannabis” are interchangeable terms that mean all parts of the plant Genus Cannabis, whether growing or not; the resin extracted from any part of the plant; concentrated cannabis; edible products containing same; and every active compound, manufacture, derivative, or preparation of the plant, or resin." and

"(iii) For purposes of section 11300(a)(ii) “cannabis plant” means all parts of a living Cannabis plant.

(iv) In determining whether an amount of cannabis is or is not in excess of the amounts permitted by this Act, the following shall apply:

(a) only the active amount of the cannabis in an edible cannabis product shall be included;"



So all is legal, hash, edibles, etc, and only the actual amount of plant factors into the 1 ounce possession, not the other ingredients in the edibles.

LaCi - posted on 07/23/2010

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"Marijuana is pyschologically addictive but not physically. So can be WOW,"



WOW is way more addictive and devastating than marijuana. Probably more so than cocaine. I'll stand by that. Stupid WOW.







Methamphetamine is a drug and also a medicine.



And most medicines are used recreationally as drugs. The only difference between a "medicine" and "drug" is the intent of the user. Same as the difference between keyboard duster and a drug is the intent of the user.





If california legalizes pot this year, I may want to move there. Not that I really give a shit about marijuana, but I do like the idea of living in a state that has stockpiles of cash. Can't even imagine how nice cali will be with the additional billions after a few years and climbing out of debt.

[deleted account]

Cocaine is a DRUG, it is also a medicine. Cocaine hydrochloride is a local anaesthetic used topically to the mouth, throat and nose during surgery, dentistry and other medical procedures.
http://www.medicinenet.com/cocaine_hydro...

Morphine is a DRUG, it is also a medicine. Morphine sulphate is given as an analgesic for many medical conditions in many forms (opiates). There are also many analgesic medications made from synthesised morphine (opiods) that are commonly given and prescribed for medical conditions.
http://www.medicinenet.com/morphine_exte...

Ketamine is a DRUG, it is also a medicine. Ketamine is used as an anaesthetic and a tranquilliser for certain medical tests, procedures and surgery.
http://medical-dictionary.thefreediction...

There are many examples of DRUGS that are medicines, some have been used as medicine for centuries, some have been synthesised, some are new in their medical uses, some have fallen out of favour or been replaced by other drugs or synthesised versions that have similar effects. The only difference between DRUGS and medicine is that the medical community have found evidence of benefit for medical conditions then classified, regulated and distributed medicine for use by the public and drugs are unregulated.

I am so happy to see examples like the OP, where a medical benefit has been found in a naturally occurring substance (that for centuries has been used for medicating and self-medicating conditions) and steps are being taken to open that option up to the many people in real need of the benefits that it can provide. Yes there will always be a 'problem' with misuse or abuse of drugs/medications like this, but there are so many legal, prescription medications that are also misused and abused as 'DRUGS', that I see this as no valid reason to withhold the benefits of medical marijuana.

Jenny - posted on 07/22/2010

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So what is the difference between medicine and drugs exactly?

Marijuana is pyschologically addictive but not physically. So can be WOW, working out or tanning among others.

This conversation has been closed to further comments

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Jane - posted on 07/25/2010

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Yay for Oakland!!!! I wanna be a grower/farmer myself. Colorado has legalized medical marijuana and store front dispenseries. I want to apply for a license to grow!

I've always thought marijuana should be legalized.

Rosie - posted on 07/23/2010

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everytime i hear about WOW, i think about the southpark episode, where they are all addicted stuck in the basement playing it. if i remember correctly, cartmen poops himself cause he just can't get up from it, gqtm!

Hannah - posted on 07/23/2010

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I am very excited for this. I do not think that pot and alcohol are any different from each other and should both either be legal or both illegal. Beause alchol is currently legal then so should pot.

Rosie - posted on 07/23/2010

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i'm glad this is going into effect!! hopefully it will work out well so people can start to get rid of their judgemental stereotypes of marijuana users, and the rest of the country can jump on board!!

and you guys forgot to add the most addictive of them all-tattoos-and COM, LOL!

LaCi - posted on 07/23/2010

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@Erin: World of Warcraft. An online RPG game. Some people have become so obsessed with it that it's ruined their marriage.

A couple friends of mine divorced because of WOW, not JUST wow, but a big portion of it was him glued to WOW and ignoring his family. Another portion was never keeping a job and blowing all their money on various video games. I think WOW was the winner though.

Krista - posted on 07/23/2010

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@Erin: World of Warcraft. An online RPG game. Some people have become so obsessed with it that it's ruined their marriage.

[deleted account]

Also, $100 an ounce is only half the price of it in shops where I live... most shops have $200 ounces (and some are even lower if the grower is wiling to get less from the shop). I know it's ridiculous to argue that one little fact since half off is still better than none, but I didn't want the shops to look as bad as people had thought ($400 an ounce - that's ridiculous!!!).

[deleted account]

Thanks for that LaCi! It looks like I was alittle misinformed on some of it! :) I apologize for that. I had thought the sin tax was state wide, but looking at it closer I see that is just in my city... and some cities are proposing more...

[deleted account]

Just a note... Prop 19 (the "legalize marjuana" proposition on the CA ballot this Nov) will NOT really legalize marijuana. It actually puts MORE restrictions on it and taxes it up the wazoo. It will impose (on top of the sales tax) a 12% SIN TAX (which NO OTHER medicine has) that everyone must pay. It also makes it so people can grow LESS plants (thus making it impossible for people to save money by growing it themselves) and it makes the production of any other form of the medicine (tinctures, edibles, hash or oil pills, etc.) virtually impossible. The restrictions are super tight and it's ridiculous (by the way, the other options besides smoking are actually better for the body - especially edibles).



The signatures on the petitions to put the proposition on the ballot were gained using lines such as "Make marijuana legal" and "LEgalize marijuana for anyone over 21" but what they all FAILED to show is the actual proposition that would go on the ballot (and come on, what person signing a petition like that in front of Wal-Mart actually asks to see the actual proposition?). There are many people now who are actually trying to recant their signatures on the petition to get the measure off the ballot...



Like I said before, I have found medical marijuana to be a wonderful pain reliever for many people I know (I have never used it myself). There are many people who would have died long ago from starvation if not for the appetite they get from marijuana. I have also met people who were on the very brink of suicide because they couldn't handle the pain and medical marijuana was their last ditch effort that saved their lives. Every single day we get people walking into our AIDS/HIV/Cancer clinic that say "I never thought I would try this, but I am at the end of my rope. I am sorry for all the judgement I have put on this medicine in the past." Yes, I will admit it is fairly easy for just anyone to get a prescription (actually, they are called "doctor's recommendations") for medical marijuana, but I don't think we should jusdge those truly using it for medical reasons based on the few who are abusing it (and yes, it is just a few who are truly abusing it. Many people who have debilitating illnesses look perfectly normal on the outside, but have huge issues, such as brain tumors, that no one can see).

Krista - posted on 07/23/2010

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Like the others said, sure you can get addicted to weed. You can also get addicted to shopping, or sex, or computer games, or gambling. Does that mean that those activities are inherently addictive? Nope.

I think that there is a lot of medical benefit to be gained from marijuana -- that we've only just seen the tip of the iceberg. I also think that there is a lot of commercial benefit to be gained from hemp. Unfortunately, our society has not had much access to those, due to pressure by competing industries.

Amie - posted on 07/22/2010

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Jenny asked what I was going too. lol

Man you guys are cranking them out fast tonight. Need to start refreshing my pages faster.

Lindsay - posted on 07/22/2010

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People continue to do it because they enjoy it. You do not go through withdrawls from stopping smoking pot. And yes, medications are drugs. They are legal with a prescription and illegal without. Well except for over the counter drugs. You know, motrin, tylenol. They are all drugs, look it up.

C. - posted on 07/22/2010

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Lindsay, I'm not against medicine, I am against drugs. DRUGS. Medicine and drugs are not all the same, you know.

The only thing I had when I gave birth to my son was Nubain. All that did was make me so drowsy I couldn't remember anything and it did absolutely NOTHING for the pain by the time I received it.. So yes, I guess you could say [in a sense] it was med-free b/c the meds didn't work at all.

The point isn't that marijuana is ''addictive". Don't you know THAT is the very reason people continue to do it?? B/c they 'can't get addicted to it'?? That, to me, is the addiction right there. That's just as bad as any addiction b/c they don't want to stop b/c there's no ''real" addiction, unlike crack. A good friend of mine keeps saying she's going to stop smoking weed b/c she needs to get her life together, yet she is STILL smoking it years later b/c 'she can't get addicted to it'. So even though people say it isn't addictive.. I think it really is in a way for most.

Amie - posted on 07/22/2010

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I forgot some stuff...

I know plenty of "potheads", which is a derogatory word when it's said with venom.

They all hold steady careers, careers not jobs. They are valuable assets to society. They are also professionals and adults. What they decide to do in their spare time is their business. They are responsible and do so without causing harm to others or themselves.

Teenagers don't count in my eyes. A lot of teenagers try it, a lot of teenagers keep using it through their early adult life, some are life long users, some quit completely before high school ever ends. The point is it is part of experimenting, just like teenagers experiment with alcohol.

Yes there are a few who go on to harder drugs and mess up their lives. So do alcoholics. Those gateway drug studies are bogus because they worked backwards. They studied hardcore drug users and asked them where they started. No one has studied recreational marijuana users over a period of time to see if it can be proven that the majority will go onto harder drugs. They can't/won't because it will kill the theory completely. Everyone needs something to fall back on as the big bad wolf. Marijuana is the current one. Alcohol used to be.

Jenny - posted on 07/22/2010

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You obviously don't know anyone actually using marijuana for medical use. It can provide immense relief for pain as well as stimulating appetite among tons of other uses like releasing pressure from glaucoma. Marijuana doesn't kill brain cells, that was a faulty "study". Lazy people will be lazy whether they're injesting marijuana or Red Bull.



Has it occured to you that perhaps god gifted the world with this plant for our benefit? We do have Cannabinoid receptors in our brains activated by THC (among other substances). Why is that? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannabinoid...

Amie - posted on 07/22/2010

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Ok Christina,
So no one in your family (potheads aside of course) have ever taken pain killers? Have never taken a sleep aid? Nothing at all with a narcotic label? Was your sons birth completely med free?

The reason I ask is because most that fall under these questions have been proven to be addictive. While marijuana has never been proven to be.

Lindsay - posted on 07/22/2010

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Did those people in your life that had cancer not take chemo treatments? Because that is also a drug....just saying

C. - posted on 07/22/2010

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I have known people in my life that have been in lots of pain. A lot of my family members have had cancer. The thing is, though.. You don't sacrifice your morals (yes, taking 'medicinal' marijuana goes against our morals to not do drugs of any kind. It impairs your abilities and I think it's not worth the brains cells it kills. BTW, I've had potheads in my family, too.. Making it legal is just another way to bring down good people in society, making it much easier for them to get ahold of and making them too stupid for their brain to function.) It's just something that we stay away from. My husband actually knew a guy in high school that literally 'smoked himself stupid', as my husband likes to say.. The guy was a burnout and eventually he went to school not being able to keep from drooling all over himself and couldn't talk. One reason my husband quit b/c he didn't want to end up like that.

Anyway, my case in point being that there are other things and other ways to provide relief without killing all your brain cells and w/o leaving you mentally handicapped for the rest of your life. And you know darn well that there are people who don't need any kind of relief that are getting the legal crap. All they have to say is that they are 'hurting'.. Could be a scraped knee, could be a migraine, but they don't have to specify, according to a study done on the streets of Cali that was shown on the Nightly News (w/ Brian Williams. I believe it was that one). People just want it legalized so they can easily get a doctor's note so if they get caught with it, Hello! They have a 'prescription' for it so they can't get arrested b/c the medical marijuana is legal, even though they really have no real 'need' for it. It's just another way to get around the law and it's disgusting. Again, it shows the downfall of our society.

Lindsay - posted on 07/22/2010

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Cristina, I've never heard of death from marijuana....What exactly makes it immoral? Besides the fact that it's currently illegal? Because once it's legallized, is there anything else so wrong with it?

Jenny - posted on 07/22/2010

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Morals are subjective. If an adult wants unwind at the end of the day with marijuana who gives a shit? If an adult wants to put ANYTHING in their own body, why do you care? It's not harmful, it's NOT dangerous unless you are still developing or predisposed to certain mental conditions. The gateway theory is total BS and has been debunked. Nobody has EVER died from marijuana. Name one single substance on earth less harmful than marijuana.

With that said, I'm not a fan of the farms. I thought this would be a good opportunity to train some of the illegal growers to contribute to society. Many people have been growing for years with no other source of income. They are very good at it. Put those guys in the farmer's shoes and you have a win-win. I'm a bit of a connoisseur and can't imagine they can touch the quality someone growing with love can.

[deleted account]

Oiy... I give up... I just REALLY truly hope you NEVER know anyone who is in true need of the natural pain relief that marijuana can provide.

C. - posted on 07/22/2010

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Ok, just b/c it's NATURAL, doesn't mean it's GOOD for you!!!



Here's a list of plants that are NOT good for you.. But they're natural, right?? *eye roll*



White oleander, castor beans (the bean the oil is made from, not the oil).. I could list more, but stupid me.. I'm in my hotel room and my computer has been slowed b/c of the 'questionable activity' (ie: trying google deadly plants that are harmful to prove a point to you).. Oops. Probably should have worded that better in the search engine. Oh well, I'll try again later.

[deleted account]

You're in Australia, right Loureen? I'm pretty sure I heard recently of a state in southern Australia that is looking to actually purchase medical grade marijuana from other countries for the purpose of doing their own studies to see if they want to make it legal for medicinal use... I'll try to find the article and send it to you :)

Charlie - posted on 07/22/2010

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You know if my dad who is having chemo had the choice of using the toxic chemical pharmaceuticals to "help " with his excessive nausea and using medical grade marijuana i know which one he would pick in a heartbeat .

[deleted account]

I really honestly don't see the harm in it either. As I have said before, I work with people who use medical marijuana and all of them find great relief from their horrible pain using it. It's a wonderful NATURAL remedy and it's a great alternative to other prescription drugs that are out there (can anyone say Vicodin [sp], which IS highly addictive... yeah...).



Also, the revenue doesn't hurt the state one bit, and it never hurts to acknowledge it. Do you really know how much of a finacial burden CA is under? Really? Because I do. Did you know they are considering putting ALL state employees on minimum wage for a few months just to meet the budget? This is on top of the forced furloughs that the employees have been enduring (unconstitutionally I might add) for over 18 MONTHS now. Many, many, many families are hurting from the economy of the state, and if the state is able to gain a bit of revenue off this, then why shouldn't they? Also, do you know how much our SCHOOLS, and in turn our children, are hurting from the financial crisis? My daughter's school can tell you. Her teacher last year literally wept when we donated over $300 worth of school supplies to the classroom. Wept, because she didn't have the money in the budget to buy the kids frickin PAPER to write on or PENCILS to write with. If this money can help a bit, I am ALL for it, no reservations.



Also, Christina, I would like to know if YOU have and "decent" alternatives (your own words...). What is your "fix-it-idea" for our cash strapped state that you seem to think will make it all better? Got one? I didn't think so... Oh, and I doubt they would legalize "ice" since it is nowhere NEAR leagalization for ANY use right now, and I don't think it ever will be (besides, the fine for possesing "ice" is way more than the fine for possesing marijuana, so I doubt the city would give up all those lovely revenue dollars from that just to have it legal! lol).

Charlie - posted on 07/22/2010

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Yeah i disagree with your moral issue the medical and industrial benefits of marijuana , a natural plant far outweighs the fact some people smoke it to get high , i consider alcohol and cigarettes far more dangerous than weed .

Lindsay - posted on 07/22/2010

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Morals? It's a natural plant that's grown from the ground. There's no added chemicals. There are tons of medical benefits that can be used to help things across the spectrum. It's not addictive. Beyond the smell, I've yet to find anything too awful about it.

C. - posted on 07/22/2010

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"MONEY, MONEY, MONEY!"

I like how so many of you are willing to compromise morals just for the sake of money.. Shows what our world is crashing down to. There are so many more alternatives as far as financial resolutions go.. It's just too many people are too lazy to look for a DECENT alternative. Next thing you know, they're going to be legalizing 'ice'..

♏*PHOENIX*♏ - posted on 07/22/2010

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In my opinion it is thee least worst “drug” compared to alcohol, crack, cocaine, cigarettes (or as I like to call them…cancer sticks) and prescription pills… yes it does impair you judgment, but no worse then having 2-3glasses of wine or champagne while your out, then hoping in your car. Or shots of liquor or prescription drugs…any way..im glad and hope other states follow…they have to see all the money they are going to make, because that is what it comes down to..MONEY, MONEY, MONEY!!

[deleted account]

It's about time someone in CA takes a stand on our budget crisis! Good for Oakland and hopefully other cities here in CA follow suit.

Lindsay - posted on 07/22/2010

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I hope this goes through and the rest of the US takes note and follows suit. There are so many positives that could come from this. Talk about getting us out of recession. Talk about lower crime rates and over populated jails. It's a win win in all accounts in my opinion.

C. - posted on 07/22/2010

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Ugh.. *DISGUST* I'm with all the opposers. I do believe it's a very slippery slope and no good can come of it b/c you're too impaired while under the influence.. Just like any other drug, or even alcohol in SOME instances. On the bright side, I know where I'm NOT moving..

Tara - posted on 07/22/2010

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yea for Oakland!!! That's pretty much all I have to say.
Hopefully the rest of the world will follow suit.
I would rather it be legal for me to tend a garden and pay tax on it, than to tend a garden and face a criminal record or worse jail time.
:)Tara

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