Wishing Time 

Why can't we all just get along regarding marijuana?

So. Once again, I'm ensconced in the Compound, behind numerous padlocks and chains and brick walls, down under the ghetto bird, wondering what to write about.

Sometimes when I don't know what to write, I just start writing. The free flow of association often leads the horse to water, and he drinks. It worked this time, because literally in the past five minutes, since I started writing this, I figured out what this column is going to be about.

It's about not knowing WTF it's all about.

I've spent a few hundred hours over the past six months peeking under the rug of medical marijuana, and so far, I just can't quite see what all of the hubbub is about. Folks are stirring up craziness and political will on both sides, puffing up chests and slapping down legal papers and generally tossing hate and venom and scoffs back and forth in a fever pitch of self-righteous froth over 28,000 people.

That's how many MMJ patients there are in the entire state, as of May 8—that's 0.4 percent of the population. That really isn't very many people, folks. Sometimes, it hardly seems worth the effort. Many millions of dollars have been spent creating this MMJ system in Arizona, a system that benefits very few people, but costs all of us.

Now, don't get me wrong. I like medical marijuana and use it daily. I appreciate the system, which lets me get relief with almost no risk of arrest. I can carry weed around in my pocket, and I won't get arrested. I can have weed lying around on my coffee table, and I won't get arrested. Did I say I appreciate not getting arrested? And the convenience of a collective or dispensary (God willing) is hard to beat.

But I have met quite a few MMJ patients in the past six months or so, and all but a few were doing just fine getting their meds before the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act passed. Even with dispensaries, things likely won't be much better than they were before the AMMA. In some ways, it will be worse, even where convenience is concerned. By law, dispensaries will close at 5 p.m. Pot-dealers don't close until more like midnight.

I guess that, ultimately, my point is that we're making altogether too much of a King-Hell Bullshit Political Circus out of something that only affects 0.4 percent of the population. I am not suggesting that it's a waste of time. I am not suggesting that anyone give up the good fight for MMJ. I'm not suggesting the MMJ system is wrong.

I guess I'm just wishing.

Wishing for a day when we don't need a medical-marijuana columnist to sneak into dispensaries under the cloak of a pseudonym to tell you what it's like, because anyone could go there. Wishing for a day when no one cares where or how you got your weed any more than they care where you got the six-pack of beer in your fridge. Wishing for a day when we worry about more important things than whether the guy next to you at the office smokes marijuana.

Can't we all just get along?


More by J.M. Smith

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