Proposition 64 could legalize recreational cannabis

Depending on how voters vote on Proposition 64, the recreational use of cannabis could be legalized for people over the age of 21 in California.

With the proposition, smoking would be permitted in a private home or a business licensed for on-site marijuana consumption, according to BallotPedia.

Cosumnes River College students were interviewed to get a reaction to the bill of the proposition.

Kaleemah Muttaqi, an 18-year-old international relations major, said she is undecided on the issue.
“It probably should be legalized because it would bring tax revenue that I hope would help go back to schools and the homelessness issue in Sacramento,” said Muttaqi. “[The] only negative side I see is that it is a gateway drug. For some people [addiction] is inevitable. I have seen it happen in my own family.”

A yes vote would tax the cultivation, sale and use of cannabis and make it legal by state law.

“I think they should be able to smoke in public, but not everyone agrees with it,” said 24-year-old undeclared major Cheng Vong. “So I would say to use designated smoking areas out of respect for other people.”

Others feel the passing of this law does affect them because they fear the worst.

41-year-old liberal arts major Sarah Prosser said that some of her biggest concerns are that the legalization of cannabis will make crime grow, expose youth to cannabis and allow people to take advantage of growing drugs in their own houses.

“I think the downsides to this law being passed will be issues with law enforcement, vehicle accidents, criminal activity, increased street sales,” said Prosser. “And honestly my biggest fear is that by making marijuana easily available it may fall into the hands of even younger individuals.”

According to BallotPedia, people under the age of 18 will be convicted of cannabis use or possession and would be required to attend drug school education or counseling programs while completing community service.

Also, if the proposition is approved, people who are currently serving sentences for activities now made legal from this law would be eligible for resentencing.
Prosser said she would vote no on Proposition 64.

“I understand the thought process that if we legalize it, collect taxes and have some form of restriction to excessive use it will make the government feel like it has some sort of control,” Prosser said. “On the other hand I don’t feel like there would be any type of real control over the selling of cannabis.”

A no vote would keep the growth, possession and consumption of recreational cannabis illegal and the laws regarding it would not change.

“I would vote no because if you let that become legal I feel like there will be other things that will go the same route,” said 31-year-old human services major Michele Gonzalez.

Over the last four years, four states have legalized the recreational use of cannabis, according to The New York Times. These states include Alaska, Colorado, Oregon and Washington. Arizona, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada will also have propositions potentially legalizing recreational cannabis use in November’s election.

According to BallotPedia, California is the tipping point for national legalization of cannabis and might impact the state’s southern neighbor Mexico. Some also say that the approval of the proposition could be a “game changer,” said Troy Dayton, CEO of marijuana investment and research firm ArcView group.

“If [people] want it they’re going to get it,” said 21-year-old business major Kyle Somatis. “It doesn’t really matter what the government says.”