It’s hard to count how many rallies marijuana activist Dana Larsen has been to in his life.
But no matter the number, Wednesday’s rally was the first he has been to in Canada where pot was legal. Larsen spoke to a crowd of more than 100 people to mark the legalization of recreational marijuana in Canada. He also handed out free joints and live marijuana plants.
The reason why Larsen wanted to hand out the plants is because he is concerned about the legislation passed by the B.C. government.
“You are allowed to grow your four plants under federal law but if anybody can see any part of that plant from a public space that is a crime in B.C.,” said Dana Larsen. “You can get a $5,000 fine and three months behind bars for someone seeing your plants which double on the second offence. That is bizarre.”
The provincial government has been working with the federal government and local governments to set up a retail system as part of legalization. One of the criticisms of the province’s online retail sales are the prices are higher than most regular drug users are accustomed to.
Larsen says he has decided to not apply for a permit to operate his dispensaries legally and will continue to operate his two locations illegally. One of the challenges Larsen says is that the drugs are not available fast enough from online retailers.
WATCH HERE: B.C.’s first pot shop opens for business in Kamloops
“Even if you ordered it online today it wouldn’t come for a few days,” said Larsen. “There are still a lot of issues and problems with this but is a step forward. The prices are too high compared to the current market.”
“Heavy users are not going to want to go into the legal system where it is going to cost them $8 to $15 a gram. We are much more price sensitive and they need to realize that.”