pot smoking

Feds remain AWOL as public pot smoking begins

by Scott Bomboy, Yahoo News  |  published on December 7, 2012

A federal showdown with Washington state over its newly realized marijuana law has gone up in smoke, as people puffed pot in public this week with no repercussions.

The blatant disregard of federal and local threats about using marijuana in public echoed public sentiments in 1933, as the nation saw the end of Prohibition on the horizon, and it started to party in its own way with alcohol.

On Wednesday, the Obama administration issued its first detailed statement on legalized marijuana in Colorado and Washington, a development that conflicts with federal law.
U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan issued the following statement:

“The Department of Justice is reviewing the legalization initiatives recently passed in Colorado and Washington State. The Department’s responsibility to enforce the Controlled Substances Act remains unchanged. Neither States nor the Executive branch can nullify a statute passed by Congress. In enacting the Controlled Substances Act, Congress determined that marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance. Regardless of any changes in state law, including the change that will go into effect on December 6th in Washington State, growing, selling or possessing any amount of marijuana remains illegal under federal law. Members of the public are also advised to remember that it remains against federal law to bring any amount of marijuana onto federal property, including all federal buildings, national parks and forests, military installations, and courthouses.”

At the same time, Seattle issued a statement to its citizens, if they attempted attend a planned celebration at the city’s Space Needle at midnight on Wednesday, to take part in a large pot-smoking party in public.

“If you’re smoking in plain public view, you’re subject to a ticket,” Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes said during a news conference. The fine in Washington for such an offense is $100.

Midnight came, dozens of pot smokers descended on the Space Needle, and a large cloud of smoke headed skyward. No arrests were made and no federal officials were at the scene. A bigger crowd was expected Thursday night.

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