Last year, the city of Denver, Colorado, legalized the possession of under an ounce of marijuana within city limits. This was more of a symbolic victory, as nothing really changed. The cops were still handing out tickets and taking away sacks under the precedent that state law, which still has marijuana as an illegal substance, supersedes city law.
That could all change this November. SAFER, the organization that pushed the first initiative last year, has once again triumphed in bringing this to another vote. A proposed state wide decriminalization of marijuana will be voted on by the good folks of Colorado when the polls open up in few short weeks.
I know what you are thinking, and yes, it is sweet, but chickens should not be counted before they are hatched. While Denver is more of a liberal city, Colorado itself is a conservative state. This initiative has been on the ballot before and failed. This time it will not be the “hippies” Cartman is always talking about who decide the vote, but it will be the small mountain towns and folks like Mr. Garrison who are convinced that “Marijuana is bad” who will have the most influence.
Nearly the same proposal was defeated by a slim margin in the late 90’s. A lot has happened since then, what with 9-11 and the war in Iraq. It will be interesting to see how the events of the past few years have affected the small town voters.
Another factor that could decide things is the youth vote. Younger people are notorious non voters, and the only thing that is for sure here is that this initiative will either pass or fail by a only a percentage point or two. The turnout for the 18-24 year old age group could provide just the push Mary Jane and her merry men are looking for.
Also there is the possibility of a major terror attack taking place before the vote. It is hard to tell how that would affect things. On one hand it might make people realize there are much worse problems we need to be spending our money on than marijuana, while on the other hand it might also be the catalyst to enforce stricter laws on the American public for “our own good”. One can only speculate at this point. The next few months will tell the story only as it unfolds and not a second sooner.
Until then, I am going to smoke this big pile of weed I got on my table while staring out my window at the great Rocky Mountains, not giving two shits about the man or his stinking law.