The Marijuana Movement has had a problem with language. We speak of “Decriminalization,” “Legalization,” “Depenalization” and “Tax and Regulate,” often with no clear idea of what is meant.

We have seen the results of over regulation of life in general, oftentimes killing businesses and strapping the people with unjust burdens in daily life, adding to the anger, confusion and widespread hopelessness many of our citizens deal with daily.

History shows us what lack of regulation does. Unfettered business of the 19th century produced dangerous products that often didn’t work as promised. It produced the sweat shops that thought nothing of working children as young as six years of age, six or seven days a week for a pittance. Produced foods became poisons, containing botulism, bacteria and all sorts of altered chemistries that hurt and killed people.

We now live in a corrupted society, where government agencies set up to protect people have often done just the opposite. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has become so corrupt that a growing number of people reject substances that are FDA approved because it’s too hard to tell what side effects may be worse than the disease we are treating. In fact, many commercials for pharmaceutical products have longer disclaimers than commercial content.

Yet, we need sound, honest and usable regulations.  We cannot trust companies, who stand to make more money producing substandard products, to self-regulate. The greed of Capitalism is too strong, too prevalent in this society to permit self-regulation.

Marijuana is here to stay, and will eventually be legal all over the world. There needs to be regulations and standards set for the quality of the end product. Under prohibition, when shady entrepreneurs do anything to increase their yields regardless of the health results to the end user, there is no recourse. There is also no way of knowing what strain of Marijuana you are actually using, what pesticides, fertilizers or quality of water it was grown in. When you buy a cheap, low quality bag of Marijuana, the Creator only knows what you’re smoking. It might have been sprayed with melathion, neocontinids, or other dangerous chemicals. Having to be concealed means various ways of shipping that allow molds, bacteria and fungi to develop. It may have been wet with sea water, rained on after processing.  Even high quality, properly grown, cured and dried Cannabis used for medicine, may have bacteria or poisons from improper handling. Standards and regulations must be present. We have a right to know what we are putting into our bodies. Marijuana, under clean, clinical conditions has been shown to be, as Judge Francis Young put it, “…safer than many of the foods we commonly consume.” Common sense testing, regulation and standards must be put into place. They are on the way.