California Vote on Marijuana Legalization Could Make Waves in B.C., Compassion Club Says

These kind of goodies may soon be legal for everyone, not just medical patients.These kind of goodies may soon be legal for everyone, not just medical patients.Jeet-Kei Leung has high hopes about a statewide vote to be held in California on November 2.

That’s when residents of the Golden State decide whether or not they want to legalize recreational marijuana use.

Leung’s interest in this matter shouldn’t be surprising. He’s the spokesperson for the Vancouver-based B.C. Compassion Club, which is the oldest and biggest of its kind in Canada.

According to him, the California referendum holds a lot of promise.

“If the whole context changes with California being the first to adopt a legalization stance on marijuana, then definitely we could see a lot of social ripples that would hit here soon enough,” Leung told the Straight in a phone interview on August 10.

Known as Proposition 19, the proposal formally called the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act seeks to allow persons over 21 years of age to possess one ounce (28 grams) of marijuana for personal use.

If passed, the law will also allow Californians to cultivate 25 square feet of marijuana plants in their gardens.

“We would that see marijuana is something that can easily integrated and managed within society,” Leung said. “And I think that would certainly make the arguments for the continued prohibition more hollow than they are now.”

Leung doesn’t see Canadian compassion clubs being affected by the legalization of marijuana in California.

There are suggestions that legalization will encourage marijuana tourism, drawing clients from outside the state.

Leung has also heard about speculation that even B.C.’s own marijuana grow industry might be adversely impacted.

But what’s more important for Leung at this time is that California has an historic opportunity to effect a sea change regarding cannabis use.

– Article from The Georgia Straight on August 11, 2010.