Keep Pot Shops Out of Your Community

Several weeks ago, I had a call from a mother who had learned that two local middle school students had been taken to the emergency room for ingesting gummy bears laced with marijuana.  Should we expect to see more incidents like this?  Sadly, the answer is probably “Yes.”  Although it may have gone somewhat overlooked due to the presidential election, on November 8, 2016, MA voters approved the legalization of recreational marijuana at the ballot box.  The law allows the possession, transfer or use of up to one ounce of marijuana on one’s person (the equivalent of about 40 joints/servings) and up to 10 ounces at home.

The law does not create ANY limits or restrictions on the marketing and sale of edible products, including those gummy bears, lollipops, soda or other products that would be particularly appealing to kids and teens. Neither does the law establish any limits on potency, including hash oil extracts that can have a potency approaching 100% THC (the active chemical in marijuana). Over the coming months, it is anticipated that marijuana dispensaries (i.e. “pot shops”) will be springing up all over the Commonwealth.

Yesterday, I spoke at a meeting of over forty pastors and community leaders in Lawrence about how to help their city “opt out” of the commercial marijuana industry.  We opened the meeting with a reading from Psalm 127, which speaks of our children as “a heritage from the Lord.”  Since young people are especially susceptible to drug abuse, it was a very fitting way to begin the discussion.  I can tell you, I came away greatly encouraged to see so many ready to take action to protect their children and their community.

Is your community prepared to keep marijuana from taking root in your back yard?  If you are interested in helping shield your town or city from some of the effects of recreational marijuana, please contact Michael King at michael@mafamily.org. The process for enacting the necessary municipal zoning laws and ordinances can be complicated, but we have the expertise to help you. If you have the passion and commitment to mobilize your neighbors for the greater good, we can equip you with the tools you need.  You can also click here to download a two page Frequently Asked Questions brief to get started.

For our families,

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