There are now more medical marijuana dispensaries in the Mile High city than there are branches of Starbucks. In Denver, Colorado, there are nearly 300 locations where patients with a prescription from a doctor can legally buy medical marijuana, reports The Daily. New patients are often treated to a free joint, and have their choice of an ever growing array of strains of marijuana, many with colourful names like Golden Goat and Romulan Cotton Candy. Many shops carry hash as well as marijuana, plus a range of smoking implements like pipes, vaporizers, rolling papers and so on.
Further, the 125,000 Colorado residents who have been prescribed medical marijuana can now benefit from the regular wisdom of a man who is believed to be the nation’s first marijuana critic, at least in a mainstream news outlet. The critic writes in the Denver Westword newspaper, which also pays for his weekly medical marijuana purchases. This intrepid writer goes by the pen name William Breathes, ostensibly so he doesn’t receive any ‘special treatment’ by dispensaries, reports The Daily. Of course, there is also some small risk that the federal government could make trouble for him at some point, since marijuana remains a federally listed controlled substance, regardless of prescriptions. Besides Colorado, 15 other states plus Washington, D.C., have laws that allow use of medical marijuana.
This does not trump federal law, but the Obama administration has said it is not interested in prosecuting state-licensed dispensaries or those who use the drug as prescribed by a doctor. During the Bush administration, federal agents did often clash with the medical marijuana industry in states where it had been locally legalized, and many shops were raided. Westword editor Patricia Calhoun told The Daily: ‘It’s a fun new writing area, and if your publication prides itself on doing strong cultural coverage of art, theatre and food, then why not do pot, too?’
Mr Breathes is said to be an experienced journalist, and he writes on all aspects of the Denver medical marijuana scene, including detailed reviews of specific strains for sale, the shops and relevant political and social issues. In a recent review, he wrote: ‘The Platinum Purps had an orange-rind tartness to it, which would have gone great with the sticky-sweet smell of Tangerine Haze. ‘There was also a solid Triple-D, very floral Flo, and some well done Trainwreck renamed Charlie Sheen, appropriately enough. ‘Other more unique strains out of Scott’s coco mix garden, including Scott’s Blue, the Tange and the Face Wreck Haze, smelled so good I wanted to make a potpourri bowl out of them for my office’.
The Daily reports that Mr Breathes is so dedicated to his beat that he got a friend at the phone company to give him a number that ends in ‘420’, a reference to the number that has long been associated with pot culture.
Mr Breathes told The Daily: ‘Yes, it’s a great gig. But, and this is something only other journalists really get, it’s still a job. ‘Yeah, I smoke weed, but I still have to write, and I have to meet deadlines, and I still have editors… If I don’t take it seriously, I’ll be fired’. It’s even possible Mr Breathes’ writing has influenced public policy. Earlier this year, reports The Daily, the Colorado Legislature was considering a bill to stiffen penalties on driving under the influence of marijuana. But Mr Breathes wrote that a blood analysis done on him showed that he was three times over the proposed legal limit, even though he hadn’t smoked all day and was pronounced sober by a doctor.
via : DailyMail
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