Forgiveness, not permission

The old saying goes: It’s easier to get forgiveness than permission. Are the Washington pot dispensers buying in?

The large numbers of marijuana dispensers in California (and to a lesser degree Colorado) got the law on their side before setting up. The situation in Washington state is, more than in Oregon, ambiguous: Are they legally allowed, or not? The law has a gray area here.

The Seattle Times today: “In the past seven months, dispensaries have sprouted across the state, exploiting a loophole in the state medical-marijuana law that neither explicitly allows nor prohibits them. State tax officials estimate at least 120 are open, mostly in the Puget Sound area. Dozens more likely remain underground. The options are dizzying. Pot in many connoisseur strains or cannabis-infused food, from lollipops to pasta primavera? Home delivery or strip-mall storefronts aspiring for a pharmacy look?”

There’s some speculation now that this could jump-start the legalize-regulate-tax regime that has so far hit a brick wall in Washington. Or at least rev up the impatient engines.

Legislature is already out there. (A quick search of Washington legislation on the subject brings up six:

5073 Relating to medical use of cannabis
1100 Relating to medical use of cannabis
1550 Relating to regulating the production, distribution, and sale of cannabis
5598 Relating to regulating the production, distribution, and sale of cannabis
1285 Relating to regulating synthetic cannabinoids
5101 Relating to placing certain synthetic cannabinoids into schedule I of the uniform controlled substances act

Expect that now, it will get a more serious listen.

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