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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Friendly Reminder: Don't Smoke Pot in Dumb Public Places (Like on Federal Property)

Posted by on Wed, Dec 5, 2012 at 3:49 PM

This just popped up in my inbox:

The Department of Justice is reviewing the legalization initiatives recently passed in Colorado and Washington State. The Department’s responsibility to enforce the Controlled Substances Act remains unchanged. Neither States nor the Executive branch can nullify a statute passed by Congress. In enacting the Controlled Substances Act, Congress determined that marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance. Regardless of any changes in state law, including the change that will go into effect on December 6th in Washington State, growing, selling or possessing any amount of marijuana remains illegal under federal law. Members of the public are also advised to remember that it remains against federal law to bring any amount of marijuana onto federal property, including all federal buildings, national parks and forests, military installations, and courthouses.

Marijuana becomes legal at midnight, hurrah! But in light of this momentous occasion, it would be best for everyone if we handled tonight's transition like adults—not by courtin' the bull and lighting up on federal property or other foolishly public places, yeah?


Comments (20) RSS

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Matt the Engineer 1
Also, it's not legal in any public places in WA.

Oh, and Planet Money's running an excellent series on the finance side of pot. Apparently, because of the federal rules it's really difficult to even open a bank account if you're a pot dispensary.
Posted by Matt the Engineer on December 5, 2012 at 3:56 PM · Report this
Gern Blanston 2
There goes my dream of smoking a joint while I'm waiting in line at the post office.
Posted by Gern Blanston on December 5, 2012 at 3:59 PM · Report this
Max Solomon 3
Like the entrance to the bus tunnel on Pine next to A & F? Because I saw several urbanites openly partaking there Monday afternoon...
Posted by Max Solomon on December 5, 2012 at 4:05 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 4
25 feet from the door, that's the rule.

Also not legal on any college or university campus, but not sure about private ones like SU or SPU.

I think the ferry lines are ok, but have not checked on that yet. You can't smoke on a bus, but think you can on a water taxi.
Posted by Will in Seattle on December 5, 2012 at 4:06 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 5
@3 legal and enforced are not the same thing.
Posted by Will in Seattle on December 5, 2012 at 4:07 PM · Report this
It's still not allowed on any College or University that gets any kind of federal funding (read: all of them).

Think of it like booze, not cigarettes. So pretty much nowhere outside of your house for now.
Posted by ultrasuedecushion on December 5, 2012 at 4:10 PM · Report this
Dougsf 7
And for fucks sake learn how to wrap your weed. If you make the entire train car smells like a skunk farted in a jester beanie, you probably did it wrong.

It's in the best interest of everyone that the general public doesn't feel encroached upon by this legal victory.
Posted by Dougsf on December 5, 2012 at 4:15 PM · Report this
Keep in mind if you are traveling to other states and you have a medical marijuana card and go through a border patrol checkpoint the BP officers will still cite you for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, etc. even if you have a legal medical marijuana card and the state you are travelling in has medical marijuana laws - they have to cite you because they are feds even though the state recognizes it as legal. But keep your medical marijuana card valid because the prosecutors should just dismiss it once they receive verification or depending on the state you can be charged with crimes because the medical marijuana laws are not exactly the same.
Posted by jwlsesq on December 5, 2012 at 4:20 PM · Report this
Kinison 9
This also includes block parties on Capitol Hill, as well as Hempfest. In fact, I would love nothing more than to see the cops arrest dozens of idiots for smoking in the open on the next festival.
Posted by Kinison on December 5, 2012 at 4:24 PM · Report this
@9: You're going to be waiting a long, long time if you expect that people are ever going to be arrested for smoking pot during Hempfest.
Posted by suddenlyorcas on December 5, 2012 at 4:30 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 11
I'm kind of doubting that, @9.

Lowest priority.

Now pick up your trash, that's a higher priority for enforcement here in Seattle. And Tacoma.
Posted by Will in Seattle on December 5, 2012 at 4:40 PM · Report this
DowntownTaylor 12
@8, there are federal border patrol agents on borders between US states? Where?
Posted by DowntownTaylor on December 5, 2012 at 4:42 PM · Report this
And you couldn't wait 31 minutes to post this?
Posted by Sublime on December 5, 2012 at 4:49 PM · Report this
SchmuckyTheCat 14
@12 - more than you might think. not at state borders, but within some number of miles of a national border or entry point. Seatac is an entry point. So is the cruise terminal on Elliot Bay.…
Posted by SchmuckyTheCat on December 5, 2012 at 5:18 PM · Report this
I wouldn't really characterize pot as being legal as of midnight, I think the more accurate way to think about it is that it's no longer illegal under state law, and within the limitations described. It remains illegal everywhere under federal law, even if that law is more or less likely to be enforced, depending on where you're standing at the moment
Posted by myr on December 5, 2012 at 5:20 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 16
It's like saying "discrimination is legal" in states that never took their Jim Crow laws off the books. Or saying "abortion is legal" in states that kept all their laws on the books that were overturned by Roe v. Wade.

Everyone knows this but when it comes to pot they are pretending they don't know it because pretending makes it true.

It's fun to pretend. I'm a beautiful princess and the flowers and butterflies of the forest love me.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on December 5, 2012 at 5:28 PM · Report this
@9: "This also includes block parties on Capitol Hill, as well as Hempfest. In fact, I would love nothing more than to see the cops arrest dozens of idiots for smoking in the open on the next festival."

Man, is there ever anything you post that doesn't make you sound like an intolerable asshole?
Posted by doesn't make you sound "edgy", just stupid on December 5, 2012 at 9:39 PM · Report this
my god. fuck all this mind your ps and qs shit. pot is legal. celebrate. fuck encroaching on people. its legal. talk a walk around the block and smoke a fucking joint at midnight! fuck yeah!!!
Posted by PanWhale on December 5, 2012 at 10:50 PM · Report this
@12 They are usually within a few miles of the border - California and Arizona is one. They have a lot of "permanent-temporary" checkpoints as they call them all over. It was very eye-opening moving from Washington to Arizona to see this. Also, BP will pull you over for speeding, etc. and then just call in the regular cops to make an arrest. From Arizona border to San Diego there are two if not three of these checkpoints and it is only a 2 hour drive. Usually all equipped with drug dogs.
Posted by jwlsesq on December 6, 2012 at 7:54 AM · Report this
@18 this kind of attitude is exactly what she's talking about. It's legal to smoke IN YOUR HOUSE or on your own property. It is NOT LEGAL to smoke pot in public, just like it's not legal to have an open container of booze in public. You can't smoke pot anywhere that you can't smoke cigarettes, and you doubly can't smoke it around other people that may not want you to do it. I.E. IN PUBLIC. So please, coming from someone who is down with 420 but not a smoker, chill the fuck out, have some consideration, and understand what the hell you are talking about.

Posted by LORD ZOD on December 6, 2012 at 12:23 PM · Report this

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