Yesterday’s Prices are not Today’s Prices
by Brandon Soderberg
Published August 23 in Baltimore Brew
Excerpt: Since 2014, when cannabis possession of 10 grams or less was decriminalized across the state, Baltimore City has become a fascinating experiment in patchwork drug policy. Attempts to make cannabis legal in Maryland have failed for many years, resulting in more stopgap interventions, leading to an especially confusing situation for those who use or sell cannabis.
Having more than 10 grams of cannabis on you technically means you can get arrested for misdemeanor possession (or, depending on the amount, possession with intent to distribute). But starting in 2019, Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby introduced a policy that her office would not prosecute those arrested for cannabis possession no matter the weight—11 ounces or 11 pounds. Simply put, you could be arrested, but you would likely not be charged.
The far-too-complicated and often contradictory tangle of policies, rulings, and actual laws means, for example, that J, a Baltimore security guard and former cop, has to choose between using cannabis or having the license for the gun he needs for his security gigs.
“I got PTSD. I was a cop for a long time. I got PTSD. That’s one of the symptoms that gets you a medical marijuana card. PTSD,” J told me. “But I can’t get a card from a doctor because then I got to worry that I’ll lose my security job.”