Results Split On Legislative Referendums
Published: Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01
The legalization of medical marijuana will, in effect, allow people with severe enough medical conditions to possess, carry, and take this drug without incurring any state criminal and civil penalties. The measure would allow certain people—caretakers among them—who cannot get to a designated distribution center to grow the substance for themselves for up to 60 days. It will also allow for non-profits that are regulated by the state’s Department of Public Health to provide medical marijuana for patients’ use, with written certification from a doctor.
Medical marijuana will pass at 63 percent in favor to 37 percent against. While many were against this idea for fear of substance abuse, driving while under the influence, and lack of control over the situation, there has recently been a large movement of supporters on the other side of the fence. They posed quite a few highly compelling arguments that potentially swayed even the staunchest of opponents. Taxation on a regulated system of selling and distributing medical marijuana will get rid of a significant portion of illegal activities pertaining to marijuana, not to mention the amount of money the state now has the potential to gain from this. In addition, it will allow for less police attention to a much less severe issue, especially in comparison with the larger matters that afflict Massachusetts.
The topic of physician-assisted suicide, Question Two on the ballot, is a much more sensitive subject to tackle, and the motion was voted down by the slim margin of 49 percent in favor to 51 percent against—separated by under 50,000 votes. Many believed that if legalized, this system would be abused and manipulated by family members who wish to rid themselves of their elders who are fading too slowly, or health insurance providers who wish to rid themselves some end-of-life expenses.
While the votes are extremely close on both issues, all constituents have accepted the projected results since the votes that still need to be counted are so few.