The new year brought new, sensible marijuana laws to the vibrant ski town of Breckenridge, Colorado. In November, citizens voted by nearly a 3 to 1 margin to remove criminal and civil penalties for adults over 21 carrying up to an ounce of marijuana and smoking paraphernalia. The law takes effect today, January 1, 2010.
“There is no sense in criminalizing a substance that is far less toxic, less addictive, and less problematic than alcohol,” said Brian Vicente, executive director of Sensible Colorado. “This is a huge step toward more a more sensible policy, in which adults are no longer punished for making the rational, safer choice to use marijuana instead of alcohol.”
The new law doesn’t change laws prohibiting use by minors, smoking in public, or driving under the influence. It also doesn’t allow for the possession or use of marijuana while skiing. While conflicts with state and federal law remain, this first and necessary step toward ending marijuana prohibition sends a strong message to lawmakers in Colorado and around the country.