Michigan’s First Day of Legal Recreational Marijuana Sales Draws Hundreds

A budtender (right) shows cannabis buds to a customer at the Green Pearl Organics dispensary on the first day of legal recreational marijuana sales in California, January 1, 2018 at the Green Pearl Organics marijuana dispensary in Desert Hot Springs, California. / AFP PHOTO / Robyn Beck (Photo credit should …
ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

Hundreds of people in Michigan lined up to be the first to buy recreational marijuana after it officially became legal Sunday.

“To me, this is all for other people. I’ve been able to get weed every day since 1962,” said cannabis activist John Sinclair, who was the first to purchase the legal weed from Arbor Wellness.

“But I’m glad for the average person that they don’t have to worry about it anymore,” he told the Detroit Free Press.

A total of six retailers are now licensed by the state to sell recreational marijuana. Four are located in Ann Arbor, one in Morenci, and one in Evart, according to WTHR.

The report continued:

The state announced earlier this month that businesses that are licensed to grow, process or sell marijuana for medical use, starting on Dec. 1, can transfer half their inventory to the recreational market, with the necessary license. Dispensaries will only be allowed to transfer half each type of marijuana product if it has been in stock for at least 30 days.

One buyer, who wished to remain anonyous, spent the night in a tent outside the Exclusive Brands marijuana shop and said he was looking forward to buying his weed legally.

“It’s exciting. It’s nice to not have to feel like a criminal,” he told mlive.com.

Thirty-one-year-old Rich Oliver from Grand Rapids echoed his comments, “It feels safer. You know it’s tested, you’re not taking as much of a risk.”

One year ago, Michigan voters approved legalizing marijuana for adult recreational use, making it legal for anyone 21 years of age and up to use, possess, and sell cannabis.

However, Dr. Kevin Sabet, who is president of the Smart Approaches to Marijuana, said legalization is no cause to celebrate.

“An addiction for-profit industry can now target vulnerable communities just as it has done in other states,” he commented, adding, “And it’s only a matter of time before we begin to see its lobbyists bankroll lawmakers and claw away at any and all regulations placed upon it.”

Despite Sabet’s warning, Vietnam War veteran Gregg Etzel, who has artificial knees and hips, a metal plate in his head, and who bit off his tongue during combat, noted that marijuana kept him from using anything more dangerous.

“I’ve never taken opiates,” he said. “I credit the weed.”


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