90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Colorado's Six Months Of Legal Pot

Six months after recreational marijuana got the green light in  Colorado, we look at the economic, social, and health impacts of embracing pot.

A customer pays cash for retail marijuana at 3D Cannabis Center, in Denver, Thursday, May 8, 2014. (AP)

A customer pays cash for retail marijuana at 3D Cannabis Center, in Denver, Thursday, May 8, 2014. (AP)

Six months ago tomorrow, Colorado became the first state in the Union to legalize recreational marijuana.  It’s been an eye-popping half year.  First all the “Rocky Mountain high” jokes.  Then the reality.  Nearly $200 million in pot sales.  Stores and factories churning out pot, pot candy, pot soda.  Nearly 10,000 Coloradans working in the marijuana business.  The Colorado Symphony Orchestra announcing “weed concerts.”  Kids getting sick on their parents’ pot gummy bears.  A couple of deaths.  And lots of new insights. This hour On Point:  What Colorado has learned about legalized pot.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Ricardo Baca, Marijuana editor at the Denver Post. (@bruvs)

Alicia Caldwell, member of the Denver Post’s editorial board. (@AliciaMCaldwell)

Bill Masters, sheriff of San Miguel County, Colorado. (@sheriffmasters)

Dr. Richard Zane, chair of the department of emergency medicine at University of Colorado Hospital.

From Tom’s Reading List

The Cannabist: $202 million in pot sales?! (And 9 other facts from 6 months into 2014) – “Here are the absolutes, the facts, the hard numbers we know after the first six months of legal recreational cannabis sales in the modern world. Some of these numbers, including tax revenues, mean something tangible and allow us to plan for the future. Some of these numbers, like crime stats, are interesting but incomplete, given the many factors that contribute to citywide crime.”

New York Times: After 5 Months of Sales, Colorado Sees the Downside of a Legal High — “Five months after Colorado became the first state to allow recreational marijuana sales, the battle over legalization is still raging. Law enforcement officers in Colorado and neighboring states, emergency room doctors and legalization opponents increasingly are highlighting a series of recent problems as cautionary lessons for other states flirting with loosening marijuana laws.”

Slate: Yes, We Cannabis — “Voters in Alaska and possibly Oregon will decide this November whether their states will join Colorado and Washington in legalizing the commercial sale and recreational use of pot. Similar initiatives are at varying stages in more than a half-dozen other states—Nevada, Arizona, and California among them—where advocates are looking toward 2016, when they hope the presidential election will turn out enough liberals to push those efforts across the finish line. All told, more than 1 in 5 Americans live in states where marijuana use has a legitimate chance to become legal between now and when President Obama leaves office.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Jan 23, 2015
A Cuban flag and an American flag stand in the press room during the second day of talks between U.S. and Cuban officials, in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015. (AP)

President Obama comes out swinging in his State of the Union. High level talks in Cuba. Japanese hostages. “American Sniper” controversy. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Jan 23, 2015
People enter the Arapahoe County Justice Center in Centennial, Colo., Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015. The jury selection process in the trial of Aurora theater shooting suspect James Holmes began Tuesday, and is expected to take several weeks to a few months. Holmes is charged with killing 12 people and wounding more than 50 in an Aurora movie theater in 2012 (AP)

The Marathon bombing, the Aurora movie theater shootings, and the challenges of picking an impartial jury.

RECENT
SHOWS
Jan 23, 2015
People enter the Arapahoe County Justice Center in Centennial, Colo., Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015. The jury selection process in the trial of Aurora theater shooting suspect James Holmes began Tuesday, and is expected to take several weeks to a few months. Holmes is charged with killing 12 people and wounding more than 50 in an Aurora movie theater in 2012 (AP)

The Marathon bombing, the Aurora movie theater shootings, and the challenges of picking an impartial jury.

 
Jan 23, 2015
A Cuban flag and an American flag stand in the press room during the second day of talks between U.S. and Cuban officials, in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015. (AP)

President Obama comes out swinging in his State of the Union. High level talks in Cuba. Japanese hostages. “American Sniper” controversy. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: January 23, 2015
Friday, Jan 23, 2015

New thoughts on Facebook, new analysis of State of the Union twitter activity and new weekend excitement. New! And exciting!

More »
Comment
 
Meet On Point’s Interns: Spring 2015
Friday, Jan 23, 2015

Good news! We have interns, and they are wonderful, and here they are for the spring term. Meet them digitally, right here.

More »
2 Comments
 
Caller To Author Ron Rash: ‘You Cared About People Like Me’
Thursday, Jan 22, 2015

An unexpected caller from South Carolina brings back guest Ron Rash’s years as a community college professor in a movingly real way.

More »
Comment