Recreational Cannabis Shuts Down
Since the legalization of recreational cannabis use in Massachusetts began many people have been making the switch from their local street dealers to the high tech, highly efficient new recreational cannabis dispensaries scattered throughout the state. While there are many great reasons to shop there the COVID-19 Pandemic has demonstrated the fragility of this supply chain and moreover, the discrimination that pot smokers face in society even when voters have demonstrated a desire for it to be legal. While this has been great for the marijuana black market it has made it apparent to the millions of people attempting to switch over to dispensary weed that their needs will not be put first by large private or government run marijuana companies.
It may come as a surprise that marijuana shops in MA are shut to all recreational users. If you have a medical card you can still get your pot at the dispensary, but if you’re just an average recreational user you’re out of luck until Baker decides to reopen the mason jars. Liquor stores on the other hand are still open, even though alcohol is a recreationally used drug just like marijuana. The clear difference is that you could die from abruptly detoxing from alcohol. Most people that I have spoken with will cite this as the main reason for the discriminatory treatment.
If you were that addicted to alcohol that you would have significant withdrawals from it then you could go to a medical facility to get help; but you shouldn’t have to. And the reality is that the alcohol store is no different than the pot store in the sense that it provides a much-needed product to a large audience of American citizens who deserve the same respect as the next American in line. It is medicine to many people and those people are now forced to turn to the street to get their supplies. Imagine what would happen if alcoholics were forced to get bootleg moonshine from the street to get their medicine?
Make no mistake, the Marijuana black market is loving the return of its beloved customers. Whether you switched for the hours of operation and ease of a local pot shop, the variety of products, the high quality standards, the professionalism or perhaps it was the state regulatory oversight and safety measures that attracted you to the pot shops. Whatever it was probably fractured on the day they decided to close the recreational shops. Rightfully so.
While I am a medical patient, I was deeply alarmed by the fact that marijuana users were pushed aside as a “non-essential” portion of our population. While I think they are overpriced and their products are often lacking in quality, one of my favorite parts about the recreational shops was that if the black market dried up there would be pot available for people who regularly partake. This closure turned those hopes upside down.
Let’s hope on the day the pot shops opened up that you didn’t treat your street dealer like the guy who wins the lottery and immediately calls his boss to tell him off. If you have an unpaid balance with Joey Baggs the Weed Man you better saddle it up and get your credit in good standing. There is only a small hope that Charlie Baker is going to open the state again in May so your pot shops may be closed for quite some time.
Even if you had stocked up you are probably running low by now. Or maybe you missed the deadline thinking they wouldn’t go that far as to shut down the dispensary or that your everyday needs would be regarded as essential by your government. From the many people I have spoken with along the way I can tell you that the marijuana black markets are strained from bearing the weight of the supply disruptions coupled with the dramatic increase in demand after the removal of this vital link in the supply chain. Street dealers are facing upward pressure on supply costs as well as a whopping 150%-200% increase in demand. Its so much volume that it’s become a little uncomfortable for these people to operate in the market.
The reality is that recreational pot smokers should be very upset with their government. The safety advantages of recreational marijuana is going right out the window along with the tax revenue these shops generate. The tossing aside of the recreational pot user is a disgrace to state of Massachusetts. Charlie Baker thinks we are a nonessential portion of the population, but his constituents and all MA residents should give him a taste of non-essential next election year.