Comment of the Day

Reader: No One Should Be Locked Up for a Plant

Thomas Mitchell
On January 25, the long-running saga of the Sweet Leaf looping scandal came to an end when three owners of what was once one of Colorado's largest dispensary chains were sentenced to a year in jail.

The case started with a single tip from "a watchful citizen who observed the same people making multiple purchases of marijuana from a single Sweet Leaf dispensary in one day and tipped off the Denver Police Department,” according to Denver District Attorney Beth McCann. After a year of undercover investigations, the DPD raided Sweet Leaf dispensaries across Denver. They never opened again, and now their owners are going to jail.

Comments in response to the news came in fast and, in some cases, furious. Says Skip:
 I disliked Sweet Leaf's product, but let's be real: No one should be locked up for a plant.
Adds Josh:
 Only a government busybody could interpret the phrase “a single sales transaction” to mean per day. And that’s really the crux of the issue. Whatever you think of Sweet Leaf, they were following the letter of the law, and the government railroaded them anyway.

No one should do time for marijuana, but prosecutions will inevitably continue thanks to the antiquated laws still on the books and the millions in marijuana taxes that allow unrepentant prohibitionists to fight their little war. Meanwhile, schools are underfunded, homelessness is way up, and fentanyl is killing people in the streets. Hey, but at least Beth McCann and the folks at MED and the DPD can pat themselves on the back.
Replies Eric:
The way to succeed in the canna business, especially early on, was to stay in the gray area and be more creative than the MED until they caught on. Going into the black area, you gamble.
Gabriel responds: 
This law is fucking bullshit to begin with. Anyone going to look at you suspiciously when you buy a van full of booze at Argonaut to sell in Utah? Nah.

End all drug prohibition now. You know why I'm not going to go out and buy heroin or meth today? Cuz I don't want to. I have to fucking work and do productive things with my life, I can't be high all the time.
The idea that drug prohibition is what keeps people from ruining their lives with drugs is laughable, cuz people do that anyway regardless. We just throw in bonus punishment.
And Ryan asks: 
So does the State of Colorado have to give all that tax money back, or are they considered a co-conspirator?
Keep reading for more of our Sweet Leaf coverage.