Medical Marijuana: Two Years And Counting
About two years ago, a new law was passed in New Jersey allowing for medical marijuana to be sold at a limited and highly regulated number of privately owned places. It is not clear if they were going to be called stores, clinics or something else.
What ended up happening is that the procedure for companies or individuals to be approved vendors dragged on. As often happens in New Jersey, the people who were ultimately approved were claimed by critics to be politically connected. This business could potentially be lucrative.
To date, no town has approved the placement of a facility to sell medical marijuana in their town. Usually, the towns rely on zoning ordinances or something else they can find to make sure that medical marijuana does not come to their town.
Due to the delay, a doctor and a patient who states that he needs to treat the symptoms of his illness brought a lawsuit to force the State to become more aggressive in making sure that there is at least one place people can go. The likelihood of success of this lawsuit is questionable as people in general cannot sue the State to force it to implement its laws.
The controversy regarding the benefits versus risks of allowing medical marijuana is too long to discuss in this blog post. However, it can be summarized by saying that those in favor of medical marijuana argue that it provides relief for certain serious conditions such as multiple sclerosis and glaucoma and those opposing it argue that there are equally effective alternative pain medications and that allowing medical marijuana opens the door to fraud as has been seen in California where some doctors will write a prescription for about any condition.
Regardless of how one feels about medical marijuana, if you are going to allow it then make it available.