Dear Stoner: Is It Legal to Fly With Medical Pot?

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Dear Stoner: Is it legal to fly from Denver to another medical state with medicine on you?
Longmont Larry

Dear Larry: I’ve addressed this question before, but it still gets asked at least once a month, so the answer is worth repeating.

That answer is “kind of.” Transportation Security Administration officials have said they wouldn’t be able to stop passengers from boarding a flight with cannabis — but that’s mostly because they can’t. TSA reps have told Westword repeatedly in the past that they aren’t scouring bags for weed. They’re much more concerned with nail clippers and liquids over the three-ounce limit. If they do find your stash and want to do something about it, they’ll hand you over to local cops, as the TSA isn’t actually a law enforcement agency. Because local police enforce local laws and being a medical patient with pot is legal locally, it sort of means that patients in medical states can board planes with pot...if you ignore the fact that you’re boarding a federally controlled space and that federal law says pot possession is illegal. And last year, DIA officials pushed to make possession on DIA property a crime incurring anywhere from $150 to $999 in fines — even for medical patients. Thankfully, cops have mostly been allowing travelers to throw away the greenery and avoid the ticket.

If you do plan to fly with meds, be as discreet as possible: Think a few well-stashed buds in your Dopp kit rather than a bong and a jar full of pot. And remember that you’ll be subject to the pot laws of the state where you’re headed once you land.

Dear Readers: Last week, we wrote about recreational shops scanning IDs, and we didn’t hide our distaste for the process. But Luis Lopez, a former rec-shop employee, says our fear of customer information being saved is unfounded: “Scanning is only to save time and eliminate user error,” Lopez says. “I promise you nobody [at a shop] has any time or filing space for any more files at this point. It’s already unbearable trying to find enough room for all the regulation containers and childproof bags that change every single day, plus all the regulation certifications you have to have.

“When people threaten to shut down your shop for any reason, [you] will do anything to stay legal, and you’ll avoid any errors. Regardless, it has nothing to do with your un-precious and un-valuable information. Scanners are only detecting validity. No one cares where you live, nor do they want to file your info. The less info we get from you, the better. Cash only makes it easier. I don’t want to report stolen cards or read any names.”

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