Marijuana is sold openly in all parts of the country under the pretext of 'medical purposes'. Although there are laws prohibiting it in many cities, no record has shown any local pushers being slapped with heavy punishment.
Excerpts: The medical-marijuana industry relies heavily on such genteel euphemisms. To medicate is to smoke pot, and no one in the industry calls pot pot anymore; it's medicine now. Dealers are called caregivers, and the people who buy their dope—medicine, medicine—are patients. There's no irony here, no winks or nudges to signal that someone's leg is being pulled.
The euphemisms are an important element in the larger movement to bring marijuana use out from the shadows, as advocates say, so it can take its place innocently on Americans' nearly infinite menu of lifestyle preferences, from yachting to survivalism to macrobiotic cooking. So far, the strategy is working. Colorado and 13 other states, along with the District of Columbia, have legalized medical marijuana in the past 14 years.
More than a dozen other states are considering the idea. Overnight, dispensaries have sprung up in hundreds of towns and cities; billboards touting one outlet's pot over its rivals' are plastered all over Los Angeles. In some parts of California—where marijuana is the biggest cash crop, with total sales of $14 billion annually—medical pot has become such an established part of the commercial base that cities are moving toward taxing it.