Brickbats

Brickbat: This Is a Cannabis Festival. You Can't Get High Here.

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Smoking a joint
Diavata / Dreamstime.com

Organizers of the Alaska Hempfest are facing possible fines for allowing people to use cannabis at the festival. While marijuana is legal in Alaska, state law bars its use in public. Nordica Friedrich, communication and music director for the festival, says the potential fines make no sense. "People would never go to a beer and barley wine festival and just talk about beer and barley wine and just look at pictures of it," she said.

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22 responses to “Brickbat: This Is a Cannabis Festival. You Can't Get High Here.

  1. Pop up a small tent around your head and get stoned! The small tent means you are in a private dwelling now… NOT in public!

    1. What? No port-o-johns around to blaze up in?

      1. Ewwwww

  2. This is just what happened to BUCS at the Adult Entertainment Expo.

  3. Where the heck did Charles Oliver find that picture?

  4. Nordica Friedrich, communication and music director for the festival, says the potential fines make no sense.

    Who said anything about making sense? We’re talking about the law.

  5. No cop ever got demoted for shooting fish in a barrel. Or unarmed people, for that matter.

    1. Just a promotion and a medal.

  6. Erika McConnell, director of the Alaska Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office, said in an email that she has not determined the amount of a recommended fine

    How about 100% of the admission fees?

    I would pay an admission fee to listen to the state prove beyond a reasonable doubt that being inside a walled tent is ‘in public’.
    The defense attorney says:
    What about inside a commercial building where marijuana is sold? is that public? What if there are windows? What if there are no windows? Is that public?
    What about inside a home where marijuana is given? is that public? What about a fenced backyard patio?
    What, in your “definition”, (delivered in a sneering tone) would actually be private then? Just exactly where in the state can a citizen consume marijuana as supposedly permitted?

    1. I would guess the statute had more specific language than just “no smoking in public.” But in any case, it isn’t a political philosophy textbook, with appropriate jargon. “Public” is not synonymous with “government” in this context, and hasn’t been for a long time. We may not like it, we may not think it’s legitimate, we may even think it’s unconstitutional, but government has been regulating activity between consenting adults on private property for a long time; and in certain cases the regulated spaces have been called “public.” Probably the most important precedent was all the “public accommodation” laws passed by states and eventually the Feds during the civil rights period. These are private enterprises on private property, but the governments dusted off (and abused beyond recognition) a fusty old concept from English law to give their intrusion the appearance of more legitimacy. For many of these laws (not the Federal one, contrary to popular belief!) the category of “public accommodations” is basically as broad as all places of commerce generally open to the public.

      We know the courts have indeed consistently upheld the right of the state to completely prohibit you from consuming any substance in your very own home, so it’s not really out of line here from that perspective. There’s no “reasonable doubt” standard in play because the facts are not in question; it would have to be a matter of legal interpretation.

  7. Will they check to see if I’m high?

    Because I am man.

    I just had a brownie.

    Democrat progressive socialism/communism is a pox on individual liberty and must be destroyed one toke at a time !!!

    A new class at the Kennedy School of Huge Government: “How to tell if someone is high on the Marijuana.”

  8. “Baked Alaska?” (chambers round; sneers)

    “That’s not on my menu.”

    –Alaska Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office

  9. Not really sure how being in a tent, on private property, with a “suggested donation” admission of $10.00, and most likely not visible from anywhere else, can be “in public”.

    Maybe we can get the Alaska Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office to weigh in on their definition of “emoluments”.

    1. Because they are still visible to the narc-drones hovering overhead! Duh!

  10. “People would never go to a beer and barley wine festival and just talk about beer and barley wine and just look at pictures of it,” she said.

    This is a non-sequitur at best. Proof of intent at worst.

    It’s a stupid law, but the “we held a festival open to the public” defense isn’t going to cut it.

  11. Sounds like cannabis fests were better before it was legal. Then everyone would just smoke up in defiance of the law.
    And what the hell is the world coming to when you can’t smoke weed at an outdoor festival?

    I’m starting to think we’d be better off with a less de jure legalization, like Alaska used to have and like what it’s been in the Netherlands. It’s a tough call.

  12. They just forgot to get the proper permit. What’s funny is watching cruise ship passengers duck into alleys. Just like the 70’s.

  13. Alaska. It has a barley wine festival. Proof there is a God.

  14. +1 Doctor Strangelove

  15. Gentlemen, you can’t fight in here! This is the War Room!

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