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It's time to legalize marijuana in Florida
over 1 year ago


Few things in this legalized marijuana world are as reliable as death and taxes. One something I've always felt was missing? Legal weed in Florida. It's time to legalize marijuana, as it's proven safe and has many medical benefits, such as pain relief, anti-inflammatory properties, cancer treatment, and more. Yes, we may have some growing pains if marijuana is legalized - but we'll get through it together (pun intended). It's time to legalize marijuana in Florida! Here's why... 

Only medical marijuana is legal in Florida.

If you think you've been missing out on all of those Colorado tourism videos and Instagram accounts, now might be a good time to start filling your Facebook feed with weed pics. That's because Floridians will get a chance to vote on whether or not they should legalize the recreational use of pot.


 While it might sound like an April Fool's joke, several petitioners have submitted enough signatures for a referendum to put legalization on Florida's ballot in November. If most voters approve, they could help shape how other states approach legalizing marijuana.


Legalization will bring $100 million+ for schools.

In 2016, Colorado collected $135 million from recreational and medical cannabis sales. They earmarked $40 million for school construction and maintenance and another $20 million for youth substance abuse programs.


 They also set aside some money for law enforcement training (for dealing with impaired drivers) and some general public health initiatives like anti-bullying campaigns. That's just one state! Why can't we do it here if they can generate enough tax revenue on weed?


 Colorado's weed tax isn't even that high either. Some could argue it should be higher so they can get more funding for schools. Still, I feel that anyone smoking marijuana is not a parent, nor are they sitting at home watching kids all day, so I think their priorities are wrong anyway.


California had $2.8 billion in revenue from legal sales last year.

Legalizing recreational use could have a significant impact on state coffers. After all, California had $2.8 billion in revenue from legal sales last year. That number is estimated to double by 2019.


 And while there are certainly some concerns about road safety and how law enforcement will deal with impaired drivers, pot legalization is becoming more popular among Americans every day.


 It remains illegal under federal law (though Trump has expressed interest in leaving that fight up to individual states). Still, according to multiple reports, efforts are underway at all levels of government for action on cannabis legalization next year.


Enforcement wastes law enforcement resources.

The main argument for legalizing recreational weed, at least from a law enforcement perspective, would free up law enforcement resources. If there were no legal penalties for possession of marijuana, police could spend their time pursuing more pressing issues—such as violent crime.


 The experience of states like Colorado and Washington suggests that might be true. While both legalized weed in 2012, some experts are unsure if law enforcement will ever see a noticeable decrease in pot-related arrests and prosecutions.


 But legalization advocates have estimated that legalization would reduce court spending by $13 million to $22 million annually while reducing prison costs by between $8 million and $12 million per year.


Citizens can grow to legalize marijuana up to six plants at home.

Up to six plants can be grown by Floridians of legal age who have obtained a medical card. The plant must also be grown inside unless you have received a waiver from your county government.


 And it is illegal for anyone but cardholders to possess weed, even if it was legally purchased elsewhere. But recreational users aren't covered under that law - they need their constitutional amendment. It remains unclear how local police would handle legal dispensaries of weed in other states that might set up shop in a neighboring county. 


Some sheriffs have already said they won't enforce any laws regulating pot sales - but that likely depends on how much revenue such shops could produce via licensing fees and taxes on cannabis sales.


Putting people who use marijuana behind bars does nothing.

Weed legalization has been a hot topic since Colorado and Washington legalized it. And, with 24 counties passing resolutions legalizing recreational weed as of April 2018, there is speculation that pot will be legal statewide by 2020.


 Nevertheless, there are still strong supporters of keeping marijuana illegal—including Governor Rick Scott. He legalized marijuana and vetoed a bill that would have allowed people with terminal illnesses access to medical cannabis earlier in March 2018.


 Whether or not you think that smoking weed is bad for you, many agree that putting people who use marijuana behind bars does nothing but cost taxpayers money and tear families apart.


 Though legal weed might seem like an impossible feat now, it won't be long before Florida finds itself green among other states who've legalized recreational cannabis use.


Comparing alcohol and cigarettes to pot is ridiculous.

When considering whether or not to legalize recreational weed, there are several factors one must consider: Enforcement of current laws, general health and safety concerns, and also what effects legalization will have on our economy.


 There is no doubt that both weed, alcohol, and cigarettes are far more harmful than marijuana. No one has ever died from a cannabis overdose. It is virtually harmless compared to other substances—unless you drive while under its influence. As far as creating a new industry that could further strengthen our economy—it's not a bad idea.


Driving under the influence of pot causes no accidents.

Before Oregon made recreational marijuana legal, John Ingold was driving under its influence. He had been smoking weed for years and even used it as an antidepressant after his family was seriously injured in a car accident when he was younger. 


So he said it never occurred to him that smoking weed before driving might be dangerous. But then, last year, Oregon legalized recreational cannabis, and Ingold gave it up cold turkey.


 I just quit, he says matter-of-factly. And by leaving, he didn't just mean tossing out his stash -- he stopped using pot altogether because of what happened on a trip home from a party one night last summer: During a routine traffic stop, authorities discovered that Ingold had smoked pot earlier that evening and charged him with driving under its influence.


Weed doesn't turn users into killers.

While U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions recently rescinded an Obama-era memo that generally directed federal prosecutors not to interfere with state laws allowing people to use pot for medical or recreational purposes, current FBI Director Chris Wray suggested he may pursue it as a law enforcement issue.


 Sessions' move effectively puts state-approved pot businesses on uncertain ground. It is bad news for advocates who have fought for legalization for years and are now wondering if their efforts will be derailed by pushback from Washington. 


But there's little chance of that happening at a practical level. This is more rhetorical than real, and conservatives shouldn't let it cloud their judgment.


I support my friends with cancer who need it most.

While cancer has been declared a disease of lifestyle, there is still much we can do to prevent or reduce our risk. Studies have proven that the use of cannabis can aid in treatment as well as symptom relief.


 Thus far, there have been zero reported cases of lung cancer related to smoking pot. Doctors advocate for medical marijuana use on their own because they have seen first-hand how it has helped patients overcome symptoms such as pain and nausea (among others).


 While everyone may not agree with these claims, I support my friends who have gone through chemo and could benefit from such a life-saving plant.


What counties in Montana Is weed legal?

56 out of 64, the majority of counties have legalized medical weed. Four other counties have passed regulations but haven't yet issued dispensary licenses, and another 15 are debating legalization. 


Some don't have any regulations at all. In eight states (including California), anyone over 21 can possess up to an ounce of cannabis flower or 8 grams of concentrate without a doctor's recommendation, and no medical card is needed. As long as you don't exceed that amount, you won't get busted by police or prosecuted by local governments. 


However, with their home-grow allowances and less stringent laws on possession, these legalized states still allow fines for public consumption, so there is no legal place where you can use cannabis openly.


How much does weed cost in Montana?

It is important to note that weed costs in Montana vary widely depending on location.

  •  In Bozeman, a gram of weed costs about $14, while it costs closer to $20 in Belgrade. On average, a gram will run around $12 in Montana.
  • According to Google Street View: There are five medical dispensaries and one recreational dispensary within a 10-mile radius of Bozeman's Main Street. 


  •  That means residents can obtain marijuana without going too far out of their way or spending much money (Marijuana costs an average of $12 per gram). Cannabis sales range from $8 per half-gram joint ($19 for 1/4 oz) to around $27 per eighth of an ounce ($55 for 1/2 oz), plus taxes.


How much medical weed can I buy in Florida?

  • Medical weed is legal, and there are two ways to get it: ordering from a state-approved vendor or being a caregiver for someone who is legally allowed to use medical weed.


  •  Medical pot patients are allowed 2.5 ounces every 28 days and five medical weed plants. Caregivers can have an unlimited amount of plants for as many people as they want, but everyone who uses their care must be a member of their Florida-approved registry. Caregivers are also allowed 2.5 ounces every 28 days for each patient they're caring for.


Is possession of weed illegal in Florida?

Yes, but it's less enforced than it was a decade ago. In 2016, you can smoke or possess under 20 grams of weed without being subject to arrest or prosecution for a misdemeanor. You'll get a civil citation at that amount and have to pay a fine.


 However, only ten years ago, possession of any amount would land you in jail for up to one year and be subjected to fines up to $1,000. Use was also punishable by jail time—but only if more than 20 grams were found on your person (which is still enough weed for multiple joints). It still seems pretty harsh compared with other states like Colorado or California, where recreational use is legal.


Best Of legal Weed in Florida

We've got a lot of diverse options when it comes to legalized weed in Florida. There are more places you can get legal than illegal weed right now. So whether you want to smoke a joint at work or bring home some edibles for your friend's birthday party, there's no shortage of options (legally). Below, we look at each county that has passed recreational legalization.



  1. The state of our criminal justice system is broken, and it isn't one of Obama's post-racial proclamations or a dashcam video that reveals that truth. This travesty is correct under our noses — a statistic I came across while preparing my column on legalizing recreational pot use in Florida. 
  2. Since 2008, nearly 22 million Americans have been arrested for possession of drugs other than marijuana — cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and prescription pills like OxyContin.
  3.  During that period, 679,000 people were arrested for possession of small amounts of pot — less than an ounce — according to Arresting White People, a report by Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union released last week.


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