New Pot Fight: Medical vs. Full Legalization
'Big Marijuana' will lose money if it becomes legal everywhere
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 27, 2013 10:44 AM CDT
This file photo shows different strains of marijuana on display during the grand opening of the Seattle location of the Northwest Cannabis Market. It sells medical marijuana products.   (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

(Newser) – The pro-marijuana movement has gotten big enough to have its own internal rift. Politico takes a look at an unlikely pair of enemies—the medical marijuana camp versus the full-legalization camp. The main reason comes down to simple economics: Medical marijuana is now a lucrative, growing industry in 18 states—think of it as "Big Marijuana"—but it won't be anymore if legalization becomes the law of the land, as it has already in Washington state and Colorado. If anyone can get pot anywhere, why would they need to visit medical dispensaries?

That helps explain why the Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine joined a host of more typical anti-marijuana groups this spring in opposition to a legalization measure on the ballot. Two pro and con quotes on the rift:

  • “There are people who are benefiting financially and would prefer to see nothing change that,” says a member of the pro-legalization group NORML.
  • But don't be too judgmental of the medical groups, says another activist. “We’re taking about people who have risked their freedom and liberty and faced the threat of criminal penalties to open these businesses to meet the needs of the public.”
Click to read about another marijuana milestone of sorts happening this weekend.

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Showing 3 of 44 comments
Jul 28, 2013 2:24 PM CDT
Once again greed raises it's ugly head.
Jul 28, 2013 12:28 PM CDT
I also smoke pot I don't have a medical card for it but could get one when I have 400.00 dollars than the cost of the pot the distance I have to go to get in Jersey so I'm all for legalization of pot. The dispensaries could still have a thriving business selling legal but now they want to be greedy and think they should be the only ones to get pot from. All the pot organizations that I contributed to and others have helped the dispenser's become legal plus the places in Los Angeles and throughout Calif. that got raided I believe your getting legal contributions from some of these same people that helped you get started. Now for a payback you want to fight the legalization for everybody. None of you have the right to tell us Americans what we can and can't do with something that we have been fighting for. You want to tell us we can't grow our own for personal use not to sell. the doctors are over priced to get it and the pot is over priced when you buy it 7 the travel to go to get it we should be able to grow our own. Seem after all is said and done Dispensaries want it all for themselves and you can bet I will never give any money for the dispensaries legal bills. For me I'd rather get it from my person than any of you dispensaries it's close it's better than yours and it don't cost close to what you rip-offs sell it to people that have prescriptions. YOU GUY'S ARE GREEDY I HOPE YOU DO GO OUT OF BUSINESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Jul 28, 2013 7:52 AM CDT
LEGALIZE IT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!