NH House Votes Wed. on Legalizing Marijuana

On Wednesday, for personal use. Anyone over 21 could possess up to an ounce of marijuana without violating any NH criminal law.

Of course, the State of Colorado has made news across the world by legalizing possession of marijuana and allowing private business to openly sell marijuana.

Marijuana remains illegal under federal law, but the Feds generally won't prosecute people for possession of small amounts of marijuana.

As you can see from the , the old-timers are still hauling out the tired old arguments that marijuana is a "gateway drug", etc.

But the question my friend are asking is: if marijuana is legalized, will criminal defense lawyers take a big hit?

Probably not. Most of our clients are charged with more serious crimes. When we represent a person charged with marijuana possession, most of the time it is a college student that is trying to avoid a criminal record - and even the new Bill excludes people under 21.

More importantly, driving under the influence of marijuana (or any other substance) remains a crime in NH. If marijuana is legalized, I would not predict an uptick in people driving while impaired by marijuana -but I would predict a huge increase in arrests for that charge by frustrated law enforcement officers who disagree with the policy of legalization.

Of course, the question for such officers is simple: every day, you see the wreckage strewn by alcohol abuse - domestic violence, drunk driving fatalities, college student overdoses. Marijuana is associated with none of these societal ills. Why are you still gunning for pot smokers?