Once again, the City Council has failed to adopt a zoning ordinance regulating where medical marijuana can be grown in the city.
Of course, Hamtramck isn’t alone on where to stand on this issue. Many communities have declared a moratorium on the issue until the new state law is clarified by state legislators and the courts.
And it’s true, just because an overwhelming number of voters supported the law legalizing the growth and use of medical marijuana doesn’t mean it’s legal in the eyes of federal authorities.
But let’s stand back for a moment and take a deep breath. Yes, the use of medical marijuana is highly controversial. But consider this: A majority of voters in every county of the state approved the law.
Clearly, the will of the people is to allow the use and growth of medical marijuana. And yes, voters supported a law that is relatively wide-open and even vague.
Clearly, voters want it this way, despite what certain conservative lawmakers insist on changing.
It is a slap in the face of voters to make this law more restrictive or to declare the growing of medical marijuana illegal, as one local candidate for City Council suggests. (That would be Roger Lamm.)
The people have spoken. Legislators here and statewide would be wise to listen to the people.
Heck, there is probably even enough support from voters to legalize pot and allow it to be taxed. In fact, there is now a proposed Congressional legislation to do just that.
But back to Hamtramck.
By not adopting a zoning law restricting where medical marijuana can be grown, we have blown a chance to attract growth operators. In other words, new businesses.
Yes, we realize the business of growing medical marijuana is offensive to some, but then again there once was a similar attitude about alcohol back in the 1920s.
Well, times and attitudes have changed in recent years. Many people have come to realize that the use of marijuana is no worse — and might even be better –than consuming alcohol.
One thing is for sure, as long as marijuana is kept illegal, criminals will be the ones profiting.
Hamtramck needs all the new business it can get. We are certainly in no position to be picky.