With borders encompassing most of the majestic geographic formation of the Rocky Mountains, Colorado has become the first state in the United States to legalize cannabis for medicinal and recreational use since prohibition began around the early 1900’s. While cannabis is still classified as a Schedule I drug, according to the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 (Dolan p. B.1), legalization in Colorado has been a positive force in stimulating tourism, boosting tax revenue, and creating jobs in the rapidly developing industry.
Legalization of marijuana has been great for Colorado’s economy mainly because of the influx of tourists spending their money in dispensaries across the state. A market study, released in July, suggested 40 percent of customers in the Denver-area recreational marijuana shops are tourists. That same figure spikes to 90 percent in ski towns such as Aspen or Breckenridge. (“Milder Marijuana” Wyatt n.p.) These figures show Colorado isn’t all ski slopes and cabins, but hosts a laundry list of activities for tourists to partake in. Using the internet and other tools available, a great vacation can be planned filled with all the sights of Colorado including the benefit of getting high legally.
The cannabis culture has evolved to cater to the tidal wave of tourists as well as state residents. Foods infused with marijuana are booming in the state’s new recreational market. Some choose edible pot because of health concerns about smoking the drug. Others are visitors who can’t find a hotel that allows toking and are stymied by a law barring public outdoor pot smoking. (“Colorado Eyes” Wyatt n.p.)
New products infused with marijuana include cookies, brownies, and c...
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...in Colorado. Ebbu, a Denver startup, labels their goods by the feeling that the customer wishes to feel. Offering products like “Energy”, “Create”, and “Bliss”, Ebbu is taking an approach that mimics artisan-like skills. Ebbu, and companies like it are reaffirming the idea that legalization of marijuana is great for jobs, and it is great for business. (Halper p. A1)
Looking forward, Colorado has a spotlight cast on the current experiment with legalization. Between the growth of tourism, state income revenue, and jobs in Colorado, it seems that legalization was a smart and gutsy move to say the least. Still considered an illegal drug by the federal government, cannabis and its various uses will have to grow on the United States as a country. For now, states where the plant is illegal will have to sit back and watch the wonderful progress as it unfolds in Colorado.
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