What happens when an act or substance, that was previously illegal, is suddenly legal? In Colorado, it seems, you make new, equally offensive laws.
Amendment 64 was passed in Colorado last November making recreational use of cannabis for adults legal. But that didn’t stop Governor John Hickenlooper from signing a new set of marijuana regulations into law on May 28.
Among the restrictions, cartoon characters and other such images in advertising will now be prohibited to ensure that pot isn’t marketed to kids. Also, recreational growers will be limited to just six plants (with only three flowering) at any given time. Coloradoans will be able to purchase only one ounce for recreational use, while out-of-state stoners will be limited to just a quarter-ounce purchase and prohibited from returning home with their stash. But, by far, the most troubling new measure is that marijuana magazines will be required to be kept out of sight, akin to pornographic publications.
On May 29, HIGH TIMES magazine joined with Hemp Connoisseur and The Daily Doobie asking a judge to prevent enactment of the law, which is set to take effect in July. David Holland, legal counsel for HIGH TIMES, explained the challenge.
“We believe it’s an illegal restriction directed specifically at the content of free speech of HIGH TIMES,” Holland said. “Therefore, we’ve joined with other publications to challenge this unconstitutional act.”
“There’s nothing obscene about marijuana,” he continued. “Amendment 64 was conceived to treat marijuana like alcohol. Therefore, Food & Wine magazine should be restricted in the same manner, if marijuana and alcohol are to be treated equally. The fact is none of these restrictions were in place when marijuana was illegal in Colorado. So it makes no sense that it should be restricted when it’s legal.”
The Colorado State government has 20 days to respond to the challenge.