Weed Bill Risks Going Up In Smoke
No matter how you feel about the legalization of marijuana, you can't deny that its been a hot topic in our great state for some time now. The topic looked to have finally "cherried" this November when the (may I say wise and intelligent) citizens of NJ held their lighter to the bowl of democracy and voted "YES." Everybody's favorite governor Phil Murphy initially campaigned on the legalization of marijuana way back in 2017 (which feels like it was a full 40 years ago), so you'd think Big Philly Style would be celebrating his victory. However, with just days to go before January 1st, Murphy runs the risk of being the ultimate harsher of mellows. According to this story on NJ.com, the bill is currently held up on Murphy's desk. Why? The addition of penalties for underage use. The bill currently contains no punishments for individuals under 21 caught using. Murphy's team called the lack of language a "drafting error" but other sources claim that it was a "policy decision" by the author of the bill, State Senator Nicholas Scutari.
Personally, I feel like fining 20 and unders for the use of marijuana is a bad idea. Where are they going to have the money to pay the fine, seeing as they likely have alright spent all of their coin on the thing they're being fined for using! I won't speak to my opinions on the matter (which is totally obvious), but I'm sure we can all agree that hopefully this gets resolved one way or the other and soon. A "grey area" where the drug is technically protected BUT people can still be arrested for it sounds like a real bummer and will create a ton of headaches in the courts if/when the bill eventually passes. Plus think of all of the businesses that will be positively affected...late night delivery places, convenience stores that sell "tobacco bongs", the dayglo poster of Bob Marley industry...Right now, the NJ economy could use a bit of a contact high. What do you think? Sound off in the comments and until then, smoke 'em if you got 'em (if you're 21 or over.)