10 June 2016
Well worth a read
Joshua Weitz’s marijuana delivery company was supposed to be the biggest achievement of his life. The San Francisco native began dealing weed when he was 14 years old, and by 2013 he was eager to apply his skills in a legitimate medical cannabis business with a California license.
“You get this sense of a real supreme accomplishment. It felt so good to build something,” said Weitz, now 33.
But just before he was about to open the doors to Mirage Medicinal, his dream came crashing down. Weitz was pulled over while driving on Interstate 40 in Texas in July of 2014 and was charged with a felony for marijuana possession.
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His criminal record and subsequent incarceration for marijuana offenses made it impossible for him to own and operate the business he had created. Instead, his sister, Nina Parks, took over Mirage Medicinal while Weitz languished behind bars.
Weitz’s predicament sheds light on what activists have increasingly identified as a major injustice in the burgeoning pot industry: underground growers and drug dealers have been systematically shut out, and victims of the war on drugs have been unable to participate in the booming marijuana economy.