Aurora City Councilman Bob Broom's comments about that city's efforts to ban medical marijuana dispensaries are sure to be a subject of conversation during a free MMJ panel discussion at the Loews Denver Hotel, 4150 East Mississippi.
The event is being organized by the Cannabis Therapy Institute, whose Laura Kriho thinks the recently passed medical marijuana bills HB 1284 and SB 109 are terrible pieces of legislation. And she sees lawyers as the folks best positioned to ameliorate their worst aspects.
"The impetus for doing this panel discussion was a group called the Voluntary Committee of Lawyers," Kriho says. "Back in the '20s and '30s, they banded together across the country to determine ways to get a constitutional amendment on the ballot to repeal prohibition. Lawyers really helped bring down alcohol prohibition, and it's my belief they will play a big part in bringing down cannabis prohibition."
With that in mind, she sent out invites to ten MMJ attorneys from Denver, Boulder, Colorado Springs and Blackhawk. "They probably haven't all met before," she notes. "So my motive was to get them together and maybe inspired them to form a coalition of some sort to better serve the patient and business community."
There are no firm plans to form such an organization thus far, but who knows, given that all ten attorneys accepted Kriho's invitation. She'll serve as the moderator for the evening, and she plans to focus on two major questions:
"The first one is, 'What kind of creative ideas do you have for challenging these new laws?,'" she reveals. "And the second one is going to be, 'How can we come together to help the patient community in Colorado?'"
She won't be shy about expressing her own opinion of recent events regarding MMJ.
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"We got our asses kicked in the legislature this year," she maintains. "I think it's just dawning on some people just how badly we got hurt there. Our issue is self-regulation and forming a trade association to address issues in the community, and not following people like [Coloradans for Medical Marijuana Regulation executive director] Matt Brown, who was in favor of these bills. Hopefully, the politically naive people in the business have learned something from the school of hard knocks and we can come out stronger on the other side of that."
The panel will feature:
• Clifton L. Black (Colorado Springs) • Jessica P. Corry (Denver) • Tae Darnell (Denver) • Lauren C. Davis (Denver) • Jeffrey Gard (Boulder) • Richard Gee (Blackhawk) • Charles T. Houghton, P.C. (Colo. Springs) • Danyel Joffe (Denver) • Craig Small (Boulder) • Ann Toney, Lawyer (Denver)
Things get underway at 6:30 p.m. Click here for more details.