In continuing coverage of the cannabis legalization movement, a related story about states where legalization was on the ballot and now threatens to push out existing medical marijuana programs.
This one was easy to see coming. Medical marijuana ‘cards’ permitted access to cannabis, and they’ve been very easy to obtain. It required little more than a perfunctory evaluation by a willing doctor. Hordes of people signed up (way beyond projections), and I’m guessing that a certain percentage didn’t actually suffer from PTSD or chronic pain or whatever diagnosis they received. Now with the prospect of full legalization, patients will be asking themselves why they shouldn’t just buy at a lower price from a “recreational” pot provider. It’s a good question and panicky medical pot vendors are already looking to sell at a profit before the market is dominated by big, well-capitalized firms chasing quick bucks.
It’s possible the healthcare-oriented smaller providers can make a living on the pediatric side, where medical programs will continue. We’ll have to wait and see.
By the way, this notion of ‘recreational’ drug use is somewhat confusing. I mean, are we talking about recreation and leisure activities of the sort you get at the campsite, or on the trampoline, or playing bingo? Do we refer to ‘recreational’ drinking, or tobacco use? I don’t recall the term used that way. What about recreational speedballing (shooting heroin plus cocaine)? Is that a thing? Would visiting a crack house qualify?
When a celeb like Cory Monteith or Philip Seymour Hoffman checks into a hotel room and binges out on a host of substances, does that qualify as ‘recreation’? I don’t think so, Lucy. Could it be interpreted as ‘medicinal’? After all, most of the drugs in their system when they died were prescribed.
On the other hand, suppose some guy in your weekly group at the outpatient program reports smoking up in order to ‘prevent’ an episode of PTSD (that’s why he got the medical marijuana card, see?). Is he self-medicating, or just BSing himself?
I guess we’ll have to wait for the experts to decide, when they get around to it.