Greising: Illinois Scores Early With Legal Weed but Must Learn From Other States

With the question of whether and when to build a pot industry now behind us, the questions of how, and how much, are still very much in play. They’re the questions that matter as Illinois’ marijuana saga continues to play out.


BGA President David Greising writes every other week for the Chicago Tribune Opinion section.

Those lines around the block for recreational pot, that eye-popping $10.8 million in sales over the first five days, the talk of supply shortages and an oversupply of license applicants: They’ve got Illinois giddy about pot.

Sort of like a teenager smoking that first joint.

And the best advice I can give — to policymakers, budget setters and novice pot smokers alike — is to take it slow. Don’t overindulge. To assume, based on these first few days, that Illinois’ experiment with cannabis will be a surefire success would be a new form of reefer madness.

That’s not to say Illinois’ experiment with weed will fail. Or that it was a bad idea from the start.

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