New Mexico is on a big learning curve about consequences of legalization of marijuana, put into motion this year by the state legislature and implemented April 1.
Sales boomed during the first month of legalization, then have dropped back significantly since. Who knows what demand will be like in the long run? That should make things difficult for the proponents who predicted that state coffers would benefit from massive revenue growth from pot sales.
There’s also the issue of how vulnerable pot stores will be to robbery and break-ins, given the fact that they have to deal in cash because of rules involving monetary transactions for what the federal government still considers to be an illegal drug.
And so far, I have not yet seen any statistics about DWS (Driving While Stoned) cases. A big concern I have is how police will be able to tell if someone is driving under the influence of marijuana. Bloodshot eyes would probably be a clue, but in our humidity starved environment, high desert redeye is a pretty common condition. Maybe the only ones who will get stopped will be cruisers like Cheech and Chong in the movie “Up In Smoke,” in which a thick cloud of pungent smoke rolls out of the car when doors are opened on a police stop.
But in Algodones, a small community between Albuquerque and Santa Fe, a new wrinkle showed up a few weeks ago.
It seems that an eight-year-old girl discovered her parents stash of pot-infused candy, apparently looking like Gummy Somethings. Thinking she was doing her classmates a favor, she took the candy to her class and shared it with her BFFs. Later that day, 14 of her classmates became sick, requiring some to be hospitalized. Others felt nauseous or lethargic. But by the next day, most were back in class, apparently none the worse for wear.
At least the Sandoval County Sheriff’s Department cut the youngster some slack. “There was no intent of distributing any kind of drug or anything of that nature,” the investigator said.