Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Crazy, Mixed-Up Pot Laws

Copyright Delaware County Daily Times
A guy gets busted for growing pot in Darby, the town next-door to mine. It's a funny story, almost.

His house got robbed, the police were called. Investigating the robbery they discover a bunch of pot plants and a seriously decent growing system. The guy goes to jail. You can read the whole story here: Delaware County Daily Times.

It is kind of funny, in a Harold & Kumar way. Robbers become the allies of the cops, the guy who got arrested described himself as a "retired horticulturalist."  One of the cops was amused that he had a shrine to the Blessed Mother in his basement. "Maybe he was praying for a good grow," the cop said.

Where it's not funny, is that the reputed owner of the plants and the growing operation is looking at charges of possession and possession with intent to deliver. Both are felonies, and with the reported volume of marijuana, big felonies. In Pennsylvania, that is.

In 14 other states, it would have been perfectly legal. Well, maybe not perfectly legal, in some there would have been a fine if he exceeded the number of plants he was allowed.

In our neighbor state, New Jersey, there is a determined effort led by Governor Christie to move drug crimes out of the prisons and into the treatment and recovery community, provided they don't involve another more significant crime.

Personally, I believe that victimless drug crimes do not belong in jail to begin with. And I believe that home-grow entrepreneurial types should be regulated and taxed, and there should be serious consequences  if their product ended up in the wrong hands. Specifically the hands of someone under 21 years of age.

I am sure that there would still be enough profit for a budding horticulturalist of the ethical variety make a living while playing by the rules.

One that prays to the Blessed Mother, perhaps.

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