In the June 8 editorial “Growing haze of confusion around state’s pot law,” The Ledger once again sides with law enforcement that Question 2, overwhelmingly approved by the people in November 2008, “has come with unintended and troubling consequences.”

At the core of public servants’ recent complaint is their loss of power to search for marijuana based on its burnt odor. Almost 40 years ago, the Shafer Commission in its report, “Marihuana: A Signal of Misunderstanding,” concluded that marijuana cannot “be said to constitute a danger to public safety.”

Experience since makes it “increasingly clear” that the commission was correct.

Prohibiting adult consumption and commerce in cannabis is a waste of scarce public resources that creates a black market with the evils associated with such markets.

Experience from the era of alcohol prohibition makes these evils well known.

If the Legislature is to do anything about marijuana, it should repeal the prohibition and open up the million dollar a year economy to legitimate, tax-paying businesses.


Director of MassCann

Letter: Time to cash in on pot’s tax potential
Patriot Ledger (Quincy), July 12, 2011