Massachusetts, we did it. Finally!
On November 8, Massachusetts residents voted in favor of legalizing marijuana for recreational use. The ballot counting went into the early morning hours but in the end voters approved the measure 53.6 percent to 46.4 percent in favor of legalizing recreational use of cannabis for adults 21 and over. There was a lot of opposition, but after countless years of pointless persecution Massachusetts made history and the majority of voters had the final word. Seriously, did we have any doubt this wouldn’t pass? I know I didn’t.
This is a big deal. We’re at the forefront of a massive movement. Massachusetts residents no longer have to cower their heads anytime they have to talk about marijuana in front of friends or family because now the state is putting it in the same category as alcohol. If anyone has a problem with it now, they’re saying something about their own vices.
I’ve had some memorable experiences with this plant. I remember the first time I was ever arrested. It was for possession of marijuana. I was at the Boston Freedom Rally (also known as the Hemp Fest) and I was popped by an undercover cop for smoking a bowl. So fucking petty. I was underage at the time so my mom had to bail me out. As you can imagine, this wasn’t the most pleasant experience.
Coming from a first-generation Portuguese family, you can imagine weed isn’t taken lightly. My parents look at pot the same way they look at crack. They hate it. But you know what, it’s not their fault. They were fed the same bullshit rhetoric just like the rest of us. But now, we have an opportunity to change that stigma.
Starting December 15, cannabis will become legal to use. Sure, we won’t have public dispensaries until 2018, but that doesn’t mean you can’t take full advantage of the law. After December 15, you’ll be able to possess, use, and purchase 10 ounces or less for anyone 21 or older. Technically, you can’t legally buy it (unless you have a medical card), but you can certainly grow it.
When it comes to smoking it, you’ll still need to use some common courtesy; meaning, you can’t smoke it in public places. It essentially comes down to the fact where you can’t smoke anywhere smoking a cigarette is forbidden. That’s a fair trade. Either way, this is a win. After all, we’ve been screaming for this sort of legalization to pass, and now we finally got it.
So here’s to you Massachusetts, you did the right thing. I’m extremely proud of you and look forward to our green future!