Oregonians Celebrate Legalized Marijuana

| by Amanda Andrade-Rhoades

Recreational marijuana was legalized for adults over the age of 21 in Oregon on July 1 and some parts of Portland might have looked a bit more hazy than usual just before midnight.

Hundreds of people gathered on the Burnside Bridge in downtown Portland and lit up as the law came into effect. "We are thrilled with the end of adult marijuana prohibition, but we are far from where we need to be," Russ Belville, from the pro-marijuana group NORML, told Reuters.

The laws around Marijuana are somewhat complicated. Though people can grow up to four plants per household, the plants are illegal to buy unless their growers have a medical marijuana license, NPR reported. Retail shops are also not allowed to sell marijuana for now, although a bill pending the governor’s signature would ban retail sales where at least 55 percent of voters voted against legalization.

"Marijuana can be given away, so if you know anyone who has a medical marijuana card, they can legally share buds, seeds or plants with you,” wrote Lizzy Duffy, a reporter at a local NPR station in Portland.

Driving while high and public smoking are illegal, but reportedly no one was arrested when they celebrated the change in marijuana’s status. 

Three other states - Washington, Alaska, Colorado - and Washington, D.C. have legalized recreational marijuana. About half of states have legalized it for medical uses.

Sources: NPR, Reuters Image via Amanda Andrade-Rhoades