Michigan Supreme Court Rules Against Medical Marijuana Shops

In a ruling issued Friday, the Michigan Supreme Court held that it is illegal to sell medical marijuana through dispensaries. That means Michigan patients will either have to grow their own or rely on a designated caregiver, who is limited to providing for no more than five patients.

no dispensaries for Michigan (wikimedia.org)
The 4-1 decision in Michigan v. Compassionate Apothecary (scroll down past the syllabus) upheld an earlier appellate court finding that the state's voter-approved 2008 medical marijuana law does not allow people to sell medical marijuana to each other, even if they are registered patients.

The medical marijuana law says registered patients can possess up to 2 ½ ounces of marijuana and grow up to 12 plants in an enclosed space, but it does not mention dispensaries or otherwise say how patients might obtain their medicine.

"The Court of Appeals reached the correct conclusion that defendants are not entitled to operate a business that facilitates patient-to-patient sales of marijuana," wrote Chief Justice Robert Young for the majority.

The owners of Compassionate Apothecary had argued that their business wasn't illegal because the law allowed for the "delivery" and "transfer" of marijuana, but the high court wasn't buying. The shop could be shut down as a "public nuisance," the court affirmed.

Detroit attorney Matthew Abel, a specialist in the state's medical marijuana law, told the Associated Press the decision had settled the issue in the courts and it was now up to elected representatives to act.

"This is the end of the road. This is it," said Abel. "It will be a mess until the legislature clarifies what kinds of business entities are allowed to exist."

Ardent medical marijuana foe Attorney General Bill Schuette has yet to comment on Friday's decision, but when the appeals court ruled the same way last year, he called it "a huge victory for public safety."

Lansing, MI
United States
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

Next step: bone up on growing

Maybe this time it's Internet to the Rescue.

Many websites now exist telling anyone anything you'll need to know about the details of growing 12 plants in your house as expressly permitted, and every reader in Michigan can now start by reading an hour a day until you build up your self-confidence in the subject matter and are ready to confront the labor effort.

Another equally important contribution would be to learn how to make vape-toke one-hitters (see Screened Socket Wrench models in wikiHow.com/Make Smoke Pipes from Everyday Objects; review, edit, improve article, add pictures if you can).  Once you and friends have learned how to serve standard 25-mg vape tokes instead of torching up a 500-mg monoxide fatty even black-market-priced herb becomes affordable.  And the reported medical results, so superior to combustion, will override legislator superstitions about cannabis and lead to quicker legalization.


I am a fibromyalgia patient from michigan. i got sick, f same or oound out that ive got some spine and nerve issues too. ive lost my house, my car, my business, and now my govt is making it impossible for me to get the meds that work for me. women have the right to an abortion cuz its their body. two consenting adults of the same or opposite sex can have intercourse with eachother and can not be jailed for it. yet i must ask permission from the govt to use my body as i see fit. where is MY roe v wade? Where is MY equal protection under the law? Our govt has been fighting a war on terror for years. i wonder if any of the bastards that push THAT agenda ever thought about how TERRIFYING it is to be disabled and taking care of a wife, children, and an elderly, and DYING family member while black helicopters fly all around. terror. HA! Terror?! where are the cops that enforce human rights? Where are the politicians that care? Why does my devil govt want me in jail? Get this stupid, unwinnable war over RIGHT NOW washington! As an american citizen i deserve better! I want PEACE in my god damn back yard not war you bunch of sadistic bastards.

If you go onto Google Trends,

If you go onto Google Trends, type in “marijuana,” then limit your results to the United States, you’ll see Michigan is hotter than California, even Washington, and only behind Colorado in google searches. Even though, last year, support for legalization in Michigan was only 45%, hopefully Michigan can follow in the footsteps of Hawaii of having a 20% swing over just a few years.

Thinking Clearly's picture

The Real Public Nuisance

The nuisance to the public has become its own government, whose impediments to the will of the voters as exemplified in the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act, has become the actual nuisance.

Access to marijuana as a medicine is severely hampered by this ruling. Marijuana is a safe medicine and it should be treated as such by the Michigan government. One should not feel as though they have to hide like a criminal because of using this drug as medicine. This, pure and simple, is government failing to do its job.

Hugh Yonn's picture

Why is 'big pharma' not being prosecuted?

In 2009, over 26,000 Americans were killed by prescription medications.

Deaths caused by marijuana:  NOT ONE in recorded history.

Several years ago, I had surgery on my right shoulder.  Pain medication was prescribed..."take one capsule every 4 hours."

I took one capsule.

I was down for over 20 hours.  When I came to, I felt like I had been hit by a truck.  The next time I felt discomfort, I smoked a small amount of marijuana...pain gone, no after effects.

I threw the pills out.

Then I wrote:  Should Robbed a Bank

That's my contribution to helping point out just how ludicrous our pot laws truly are.

I would be honored by your review.

Hugh Yonn's picture

What happened to 'our' free country?

With all of the rhetoric surrounding the marijuana debate, the concept most overlooked:

Freedom of the individual.

“…over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign”.”
— from the essay On Liberty by John Stuart Mill

What happened to, "This is a FREE country"?

That is what we have been telling the rest of the world for decades.
Please, let us live up to it.

Lead by example. 

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