Q&A The mother of marijuana legalization: Pot comes ‘out of the shadows’
Alison Holcomb, criminal justice director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington state, is known in these parts as the mother of marijuana legalization. She drafted Initiative 502, which voters passed overwhelmingly in 2012; the measure struck down prohibitions on recreational pot use and led to the creation of Washington’s marijuana market.
On Tuesday, she helped inaugurate Seattle’s first legal pot retailer, buying 4 grams of O.G.’s Pearl at Cannabis City in Seattle’s SoDo neighborhood, after giving a rousing speech about the evils of prohibition and the benefits of decriminalization:
“What we are tackling today is the supply side of the equation. We’re moving marijuana out of the shadows, regulating it for consumer and community safety, dedicating new tax revenues to keeping kids healthy and keeping them in school. We’re finally taking marijuana out of the criminal justice system and treating it as a public health issue.”
The day before the doors opened, Holcomb talked to the Los Angeles Times about how the new market will work, worries about shortages, and what the Evergreen State learned from Colorado, which began selling legal recreational marijuana on Jan. 1.
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