Investigating the fine line of legality in the SF Bay Area

Legality Of Marijuana: A Bit Hazy

How do people smoke marijuana in California? Why are stores allowed to sell pipes for marijuana if marijuana is illegal in California?

July 4, 2015


IMG_2024By finding a legal use for their products, Haight pot shops are able to circumvent California’s drug laws and sell a wide variety of pipes and other drug accessories. Since the pipes are marketed for tobacco use only, anyone 18 and older can buy a pipe from a smoke shop.

Sam Seper has worked at the Puff Puff Pass smoke shop in the Haight for the past 3 years. “Everything we sell here is for tobacco only” Sam, known to his friends as “Fish,” said. Their store sells a giant variety of pipes, water pipes and hookahs. Fish has never smoked tobacco out of a water pipe though, “I’ve tried [smoking tobacco] out of a [smaller] pipe.”

“Everything in here is for tobacco until you walk out of the store” said another worker in the store who wished to remain anonymous.

But no one, from the government official to the shopkeeper to the customer, believes for a minute that the pipes will be used for a legal substance like tobacco. Such a conspicuous contradiction draws into question whether the pipes should be outlawed, or marijuana legalized.

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