A Reddit user recently posted a question asking non-marijuana users how legalization has affected them. Here were 10 of the responses:
10. Home Values
One user named “Buttmonkey677” said, “A ton of people moved here so the cost of housing skyrocketed as well as traffic.” Several other users noted that traffic, particularly around Denver, has gotten worse since legalization. But if it’s really that big of a problem, you could always sell your now more valuable home and move somewhere else!
Non_clever_username says that billboards for dispensaries are practically everywhere near where they live. At first they said it was odd, but now they all just blend in. Other users from legalized states said they’d experienced similar increases in advertisements.
8. Gun Sales
One user who works at a gun store said that nearly everyday they get customers who come in, tell them they have a medical marijuana card, and they have to inform them that they can’t buy a gun due to federal law.
7. Store Names
HawaiianShirtsOR said he had to explain to his wife that all the new stores with “Green” or “Herbal” in their names are not actually organic health food stores.
6. Abandoned Store Fronts
Many users noted that previously abandoned or empty buildings have been turned into marijuana businesses. One user said a former video rental store became a dispensary, another said a old Hershey’s factor became a cannabis factory. Basically everyone says it’s become a boon for local economies.
5. Unemployed Drug Dealers
Reddit user WhyYouYelling says that one of his friends made a living selling marijuana illegally. Unfortunately, he’s now losing business and is looking into getting an actual job. Sorry, WyYouYelling’s friend.
TheLastSpoonBender says nothing’s really changed in his life other than people making bad weed jokes from time to time. He also says that it’s still somewhat taboo to talk about at work, even though people freely discuss drinking. He also says all his out-of-state friends want to visit dispensaries when they come to Colorado, which he doesn’t mind because it means he doesn’t have to take them to Casa Bonita.
An electrician from Washington State says he’s gained a ton of new business from legalization. It started when a former client hired him to help install lights for a warehouse used to grow cannabis, and now he’s getting regular work from the industry.
2. Local Improvements
Reddit user AcerRubrum says he lived in Colorado from 2014 through 2016, and noticed a lot of changes to his local area. More construction, school expansions, public transportation and bikeshares. And overall, people just seemed happier because money was coming in from marijuana taxes.
If you look at the vast majority of responses, it’s mostly people saying nothing’s really changed for them. Since public smoking is banned, most people say it’s not like marijuana smoke is wafting through the air. And most people still don’t use the drug because it’s still not allowed by their work. So the worst thing about legalization for them is that they have to watch other people enjoy the drug while they can’t.