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Modern day prohibition: Will Colorado put a strict limit on how strong cannabis is, just as they did to beer?

Colorado government

(NaturalNews) It's a rather ironic twist that, as Colorado appears to be on the verge of rescinding its self-imposed limits on alcohol content in beer (which date back to the Prohibition era), the state may soon begin capping the THC content of marijuana.

Colorado is one of only five states that still limit alcohol content in beer to no more than 3.2 percent – at least in most places where beer is sold.

From MarijuanaPolitics.com:

[In Colorado,] you technically can buy full-strength beer (typically 4-6% alcohol by volume) and wine (13ish% on average) at some grocery stores, but they are few and far between. ...

These laws are remnants of 1920s-era prohibition, but have been kept alive by a coalition of special interests that include liquor stores and local breweries which claim (dubiously) that changing the rules would hurt their business as well as the state economy.

There are two alcohol-related ballot initiatives now being proposed in the state – one which would end the antiquated alcohol limits, and one which seeks to preserve them.

The initiative to remove the caps on alcohol content in beer and wine is being pushed by a group called Your Choice Colorado, which receives its funding from Walmart, Safeway and Kroger.

The other initiative, which seeks to protect the old laws, is sponsored by a coalition called Keep Colorado Local, which is made up of Colorado breweries, liquor stores and small businesses which stand to lose income if the old laws are scrapped.

The new prohibition

Meanwhile, as the debate rages over the state's nearly-century-old alcohol content limits, two new efforts have been launched that aim to put a cap on THC limits for Colorado's fledgling recreational marijuana industry:

One is a ballot initiative that would not only impose a cap on THC levels (which right now average about 18% in flower and go as high as the sixties in concentrates), but would also require unsubstantiated scaremongering claims be placed on product labels. The second is a bill proposed by a Republican state legislator that would impose an even lower cap with penalties as high as $100,000 and license revocation for violations.

The ballot initiative would require potency limits of 16 percent THC content in marijuana products and labels that warn of "identified health risks," including "birth defects and reduced brain development" and a long list of other spurious claims regarding marijuana's supposed dangers to health.

It would also require strict packaging for recreational marijuana products.

From TheCannabist.co:

[The initiative] would require everything to be sold in a child-resistant, opaque, resealable package and would require edibles to be packaged and sold only in single-serving amounts. It would amend the state constitution and would apply only to retail marijuana, not medical...

The other Republican-backed bill is an amendment that would impose a 15 percent THC limit – any marijuana retailer whose product exceeds the limit could be subject to license revocation or a fine of up to $100,000.

An uphill battle for marijuana prohibitionists

The truly ironic aspect of all this is the fact that marijuana is far less dangerous than alcohol in terms of health risks.

Fortunately, those who advocate THC limits are facing an uphill battle:

Luckily, both pushes have a long way to go and several obstacles to hurdle. Nearly 100,000 valid signatures are needed for the ballot initiative and the legislation has been laid over with a vote yet to be rescheduled.

History has proven that prohibition doesn't work. Not only that, but it is probably unconstitutional to set limits on THC content in the first place.

Hopefully, common sense will prevail and these proposed THC-limiting efforts will end up – as the Marijuana Politics article suggests – in the "prohibition graveyard."





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