Legal Cannabis was the True Victor of 2020
2020 has been pretty much disastrous for everyone in some way or another – there’s been a slew of celebrity deaths that no one wished would happen, political discourse has been overtaken by savages with bloodlusts and a penchant for disrupting the status quo, our politicians and government have let us down at just about every turn, and Covid-19 has just about ravaged every aspect of our everyday lives. While there have been some clear losers this years – like Trump and pretty much anyone associated with him and his administration – there has been one victor that has stood out to gain so much during these difficult times, and that victor’s name just happens to be Mary Jane.
Legal Cannabis has made huge strides this year, so much so that we may very well may have been watching history in the making, moving at a rapid speed. The story of how and why marijuana has become illegal and so vilified in this country is quite a tumultuous one. Since the creation of the Marijuana Tac Act of 1937 that banned both the use and sale of marijuana, and the subsequent Controlled Substance Act of the 70s that listed it as a Schedule I drug, very little has been done by the federal government to change it’s handling and policies on marijuana, while also acting as if legalization isn’t an issue that is supported by the majority of Americans, regardless of political affiliation. But all that changed drastically in 2020 as historic bills were put forth and passed and many more states have jumped on the legalization bandwagon.
So as nihilistic and cynical as looking back on the horrific parts of 2020 can make you, it’s good to rejoice in some of the more pleasant changes, like the legalization effort, and get excited about what the future holds. So let’s take a look at the best of events that took place for legal cannabis in 2020.
Virginia Finally Decriminalizes It
Back in May, Virginia’s Democratic Governor Ralph Northam signed legislation to decriminalize marijuana, which officially went into effect on July 1st making Virginia the 27th state to pass some kind of reform. For those caught with possession of under an ounce, there is now no arrest or criminal record offense, and at most a fine of $25 is issued. While this is not as great as full legalization of medical or recreational use, it is definitely a step in the right direction. Most states that have now fully legalized it some way began with a step much like this. And with groups like NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws) working with state lawmakers, we could see more victories for the state to come.
Legal Cannabis Market Created in Vermont
While the state of Vermont back in 2018 removed all penalizations for adults possessing marijuana and also allowed personal plant growth, it didn’t attempt to create a regulated market to combat the questionable black market that exists. But this year we saw this change as new law has passed to allow state-licensed retailers to finally begin selling cannabis products legally to the public. This is absolutely a big deal because any drug related black market has some questionable aspects, and the benefits of a state regulated market, as long as the legislation has the best intentions for the community and users, far outweigh those of a black market. Definitely a win for the stoners of Vermont.