When recreational cannabis swept across Colorado in 2012, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper wasn’t exactly on board. He even said that if he “had a magic wand” he would reverse the decision. As the benefits began to outweigh the stigma however, his views began to change.
In 2016 Los Angeles panel discussion, Hickenlooper expressed, “If I had that magic wand now, I don’t know if I would wave it. It’s beginning to look like this might work.”
Not Everyone Stands Behind Legal Colorado Cannabis
Most would agree that legal marijuana in Colorado is undoubtedly working. The state brings in at least $100 million a month on average in marijuana money, teen use of cannabis is down (despite that everyone said it would go up), money is being spent on school, and roads are being repaired.
We are talking about weed, however. And as accepted as it’s become with the vast majority of people, there are still those holding onto outdated ideas. El Paso County Commissioner Longinos Gonzales Jr. is one of them. And he recently accused Hickenlooper of turning a blind eye toward the potential negative effects of legalized recreational marijuana.
El Paso County is home to Colorado Springs, one of the fastest-growing cities in the Centennial State. Despite the fact that it is home to almost 500,000 residents, none of them are able to purchase recreational marijuana.
El Paso county is one of several counties in the state that have chosen to ban the sale of recreational cannabis, which includes the growing metropolis of Colorado Springs.
El Paso County Commissioner’s Claims Have Already Been Discredited
In a Q & A session at an annual winter conference on Tuesday, Gonzales brought up the same arguments that most anti-marijuana advocates go back to time and time again.
He argued about the increase of marijuana-related car crashes, a surge in the homeless population, and an alarming rise in the number of underage cannabis consumers.
Hickenlooper called Gonzales’ claim of turning a blind eye to these problems “absolute nonsense.” The claims Gonzales cited have already been discredited several times over.
County Commissioner Stan VanderWerf stood staunchly by Gonzales’ side.
“Some of his [Hickenlooper’s] comments today seemed to indicate that he doesn’t understand the damage that recreational marijuana is doing to Colorado,” VanderWerf stated in an interview after the conference was over.