Businesses, Employees, Marijuana and the State of California

California now finds itself with hundreds of Medical Marijuana Dispensing Clinics and is set to vote on legalizing it completely in November.

Yet its citizens still lose jobs over marijuana positive drug screens.

So is a Medical Marijuana Card a “Get out of Jail Free Card”; or is it worth about as much as me giving you permission not to pay your taxes?

The only straight forward part of this is the law.  It starts with the Federal Government, and the DEA.   Marijuana is still listed as a Class 1 drug with LSD, Heroin and several others.  That means a doctor can’t prescribe marijuana under federal law.  Despite all arguments, unless that changes the whole California initiative may be a bit of a moot point.

Marijuana is compared to alcohol all the time.  But this is fundamentally a false comparison.  Alcohol does a lot of bad things, but is a legal drug.

The big difference between alcohol and marijuana is verifiability.  A breath alcohol or blood alcohol test can easily determine if you are impaired by alcohol.  It is inexpensive and very reliable technology.  There is no way to reliably determine if someone is impaired by marijuana.  And there lies the rub.

Everybody agrees marijuana distorts the sensorium, otherwise what’s the point.  Right this minute most large employers, private and federal, state and local, fear most that an employee can’t be proven to be impaired or unimpaired.  This uncertainty clouds this issue like uncertainty affects the stock market (negatively, with a vengeance).

So the future of marijuana is not dependent on its many physiologic effects.  Rather it is dependent on the development of technology to monitor its use.

– Dr Don Bucklin, National MRO, AKA “Dr B”

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