So President Obama finally put his foot down. He's okay with medical marijuana and the kind of retail pot sales you see in L.A. (well, sort of). But this Prop. 19 business takes things too far.
So his Attorney General, Eric Holder, sent a letter to us Californians saying that if we dare to vote for full pot legalization, the feds will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger.
We're not sure if he meant it, but Obama sent Prop. 19 the biggest gift so far this campaign season: Way to piss off Californians so much that we might actually pass this thing.
Prop. 19 is a loosely written initiative that will allow those 21 and older possess up to once ounce of marijuana. But it will also let cities, towns and counties say yes or no to pot sales. And it does little to regulate the often illegal sources of cannabis cultivation.
Now, California has had legal medical marijuana since 1996, and in places like the city of Los Angeles, it's been about as easy to find as a spec script ($40 doctor's note, a trip to the dispensary, and you're good to go).
Some would say dispensaries even got out of control in L.A., and that Prop. 19 will do nothing to stop cartels from plugging into the legal pot business.
But you know what, we just might vote for it, especially after Holder sent this letter (he didn't have the nerve to show after scheduling an appearance for Friday in L.A.). Washington, D.C. is actually telling California how to vote — or else?
The feds are going to start the second civil war over our desire to decriminalize something that is practically legal now?
Kiss our Golden State ass.
We kind of like what the Drug Policy Alliance's California director, Stephen Gutwillig, had to say about Holder's line in our sand:
“There is nothing in the United States Constitution that requires the state of California to criminalize anything under state law. If California decides to legalize marijuana through the passage of Proposition 19, nothing in the Constitution stands in the way.”
We're just trying to figure out if Obama did this with a wink and a nod to encourage us to pass this liberal initiative.
Because if he's really opposed to Prop. 19, having Holder send us this threat was the worst thing he could do to block the November ballot initiative.
Prop. 19 has hardly been a sure thing in the polls. But we're guessing that the Obama administration's move could give it a bigger boost than the latest strain from Humboldt.