I have a love hate relationship with Amazon. I love the ease, I order constantly from books to candles to pillowcases. I shop at Whole Foods almost exclusively. I struggle with the company not paying its fair share to Uncle Sam. But that happily might be changing anyway as “Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is on a lonely island supporting the White House’s plan — to raise corporate taxes”. https://www.cnn.com/2021/04/10/business/jeff-bezos-amazon-corporate-taxes/index.html
But this article is not about corporate taxes and who is paying their fair share. There were those who paid far less than Amazon in 2020 – I’m looking at you Nike – for the price of your shoes – you could help those who sport your logo.
No, this article is about weed and how the ‘canna curious’, ‘the too busy to drive’, and the ‘if you add x more dollars to your order you might get free shipping’ shoppers might be able to add weed to their Amazon order when and if the sacred herb is finally federally legal. Yes, you read this right – Amazon will be delivering weed to your door along with the current New York Times best seller or your new set of screwdrivers.
Has the world gone mad? No. The world is going normal. No pun intended. Legalization is what NORML has fought for years. https://norml.org/
There is nothing abnormal about weed and that is the point of what Amazon and Jeff Bezos are now saying.
“Amazon is throwing its weight behind federal legislation to legalize marijuana and pledging to no longer screen some of its workers for the drug.”
“In a blog post Tuesday, Amazon’s consumer boss, Dave Clark, said the company supports the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, reintroduced in the House late last month. The MORE Act would decriminalize cannabis at the federal level, expunge criminal records and invest in impacted communities.”
Amazon is hoping other companies follow them in this trend toward acceptance of cannabis use and legalization. Amazon’s goal, in Amazon’s own words, is to become “Earth’s Best Employer and Earth’s Safest Place to Work”. With a mission like that it puts pressure on Congress to act – money talks and bullshit walks. Whether it is the More Act which passed the House but died in the Senate last year or anything Chuck Schumer has yet to unveil, this puts pressure on Congress to move into the 21st century and finally catch up to what mainstream people have been doing – and that is smoking weed.
“We hope that other employers will join us, and that policymakers will act swiftly to pass this law,” and in a blog post Dave Clark CEO of the company’s Worldwide Consumer division wrote:
“In the past, like many employers, we’ve disqualified people from working at Amazon if they tested positive for marijuana use. However, given where state laws are moving across the U.S., we’ve changed course. We will no longer include marijuana in our comprehensive drug screening program for any positions not regulated by the Department of Transportation, and will instead treat it the same as alcohol use. We will continue to do impairment checks on the job and will test for all drugs and alcohol after any incident.”
This is a huge step because of the numbers of people Amazon employs worldwide. It’s a big stride towards de-stigmatization. Living in the shadows, or as I call it – a double life – is bad for business and bad for morale.
“The company employs nearly 1.3 million people worldwide, and this announcement knocks the legs out of the prohibitionist fable that people who enjoy weed on their own time can’t be healthy, happy, and productive workers.”
So now that Amazon has placed itself on the right side of cannabis history what does that mean for the local dispensaries should the federal government ever get out of its own way and legalize the plant? Will people stop stopping locally? Will I stop running over to MedMen when I’m out of my peanut butter cups or my Kiva Caminos? I doubt it.
Probably not. I like pot shopping. And Amazon may not carry my favorite brands. Amazon sells alcohol and people still buy booze in stores.
“Selling booze requires compliance with 50 different sets of complex alcohol regulations across 50 states. Beyond the 50 sets of state regs are further sets of county and city regs. It ain’t easy. That’s why Amazon has tried it in only 12 cities. The liquor merchants in those cities aren’t closing down because of Jeff Bezos. Most liquor buyers in those cities don’t even know Amazon sells whiskey, and this one can’t figure out how to order Brown Sugar Bourbon in Seattle.”
“National legalization, via the MORE Act or Chuck Schumer’s Very Secret Forthcoming Bill, is unlikely to create an open-market free-for-all. Marijuana will remain tightly regulated, state by state, just like alcohol, unless the language in those bills changes—to something, say, much friendlier to an Amazon delivery model.”
“This is where things get tricky. It’s much easier to influence the language of a bill you’re supporting than one you oppose. Perhaps Amazon has learned from its alcohol experience. Perhaps its lobbyists are working to bend Schumer’s forthcoming bill into something that would allow the company to move with greater ease in the weed industry.”
Alot of perhaps’ and if that is the case – at least for me – I will have one more place to buy weed when my Amazon order needs an extra few dollars added for free shipping or I’m too busy to go shopping. What’s the expression? You can’t be too thin or too rich? Well maybe you can be but the one thing you can’t have too much of – it’s weed on hand.
Let’s just hope when psilocybin mushrooms are federally legal Amazon will feel the same way. Hint, hint.
Author: Sherri Margolin (Dark Matters)