Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Pot lands on Bill Ritter's desk -- but protesters will be outside

Last night, with less than a day to go in this legislative session and plenty of work still to be done, the House reluctantly accepted the amendments the Senate had made to HB 1284 and passed the bill (by a 46 to 19 vote) that will regulate the operation of medical-marijuana dispensaries in this state -- and inevitably put some out of business.

The measure now moves to Governor Bill Ritter, who has thirty days to sign it. But even as it lands on his desk in the State Capitol, protesters will gather outside and march to the Governor's Mansion on May 15 to protest the bill -- and, since this is a proposal about pot, hold a drum circle.

The details (from the Cannabis Therapy institute website):

11:00 am: MARCH from Civic Center Park to Governor's Mansion

Meet on the East Side of Civic Center Park, between Colfax and 14th Street @ Broadway

March route: South on Broadway to 7th Street, then walk east 4 blocks to Logan.

12:15 pm to 3:00pm: RALLY AND STRONG DRUM CIRCLE

Governor's Park, in the backyard of the Governor's Mansion

7th and Logan, Denver, CO


- Drums and other percussion instruments. - Friends with drums and other percussion instruments - Protest signs - Water, food and sunscreen - Chairs and blankets


- Cannabis (This is a non-smoking event.) - Alcohol (Always illegal in public parks.) - Trash (Pack It In/Pack It Out. Zero-Waste Event.)

This won't be the only action protesting the bill. Even before it passed out of the Senate, attorneys were talking about lawsuits arguing that the measure violates the Colorado constitution -- the only state constitution in the country that codifies medical marijuana as legal, thanks to Amendment 20.

It ain't over 'til it's over.

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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun