The marijuana community is not monolithic. The interests of consumers and industry often diverge.
My friend Jared Moffat, finishing up a stint with the Marijuana Policy Project in Rhode Island, authorized me to post this statement he had emailed me: “It’s fair to say that the medical marijuana players in the RI industry are doing little to advance legalization, and some of them are certainly obstacles because they want it done in a way that protects them/their investments. They only want to move forward if they think that’s advantageous to them. Very frustrating.”
Jared’s statement squares with what I’ve observed about the Tax Code section 280E rule denying tax deductions to marijuana sellers. For instance, NORML, the consumer lobby, has expressed support for “the continuation of non-tax-deductibility of marijuana business advertising expenses.” The National Cannabis Industry Association wants state-legal businesses to be start to be able to deduct advertising expenses. Asking for marijuana legalization is hard enough; the NCIA wants a big tax cut to go with it.