The issue of legalizing marijuana has come up in two experiences that I’ve had recently.
The first took place last week, while I was in Venice Beach, Calif.
Those of you who have never had the opportunity of visiting Venice Beach may have seen it in several movies. Local folks would enjoy it as it has a big, beautiful beach and a pathway for folks to ride their bikes or roller skate. The area is also lined with a variety of artistic folks and those who just sit around and try to sell whatever project they have personally made.
As I was strolling along the asphalt walkway that they call the Boardwalk, I came upon a couple of young men dressed all in green. They approached me and asked me if I was feeling well. I said yes, I felt great.
They then asked, “Are you sure you don’t have any problems whatsoever?” They stated that if I did have any physical problem, they could get me in to see a doctor who was in the building adjacent to where they stopped me. They informed me that the doctor would look me over and give me a prescription for marijuana and they would show me where I could buy it. The cost of the visit was $40. I shook my head and said “No thanks,” and continued on my way.
This made me think of how difficult it is for people in New Jersey who are truly ill to get marijuana and alleviate their pain.
The second experience was Tuesday, when I read a story on the Internet stating that there are members of Congress who will be proposing bills to make it legal nationally to use marijuana, but only if the state in which they live passes the necessary legislation. The marijuana would be heavily taxed by the federal government and, more than likely, by the state government.
The story raised doubts about whether any of the bills would get through this year. However, it left the feeling that this issue is being pursued and the proponents in Congress believe they will be successful within the next couple of years.
This is a subject that has often been talked about on my radio show. The argument has been made that alcohol causes more physical problems than marijuana does. It is also known that people could grow marijuana in their backyard or in their home.
Do you believe that the voters would legalize marijuana in New Jersey? It will be interesting hearing your responses to this question.
Super Bowl XLVIII
There was a recent story in several newspapers that the Super Bowl next year at the Met-Life Stadium in the Meadowlands would not have halftime musical performances because it would be a cold-weather event. Many are wondering why they did not put a roof on top of the stadium where the game will be played.
Word from some of those involved in presenting a show is that there is a possibility of the performances being on a stage at the back of the end zone. That would save the time for the stage to be put together and then taken down in the middle of the field. There’s little doubt in my mind that an event will take place at halftime.
I have spoken with several of our casino executives, and they are all very excited about the opportunity presented to them to have guests staying in Atlantic City for the Super Bowl. They would be able to provide direct bus service to the stadium or fly to Teterboro Airport and then take a bus to the game. We offer the largest number of rooms in the state, and casino guests would have access to excellent restaurants and some of the best entertainment in the nation.
Plans are under way to make Atlantic City a true showplace for those who will be here over the Super Bowl week. More will be forthcoming about this in the not-too-distant future. It is going to be an exciting time.
Several months ago, I wrote about the state Department of Transportation Office of Bicycle and Pedestrian Programs. Over the past several months, the group has been diligently working on a plan and is ready to make its presentation to the Atlantic City government and its citizens.
The study will make recommendations to improve safety, access and mobility for bicyclists and pedestrians, the group said in a news release. The study will evaluate existing conditions for biking and walking on select roadways to establish a preliminary network. The final product will be a plan that will serve as a guide for the city and as a resource to attain funding for the implementation of bicycle and pedestrian improvements.
City Council will discuss the matter at 5 p.m. March 13 during the regularly scheduled meeting at City Hall. The public will have an opportunity beginning at 3 p.m. to review project materials prior to the meeting.
The project started with a group of local people who were invited to be part of this plan. Unfortunately, the group that ran the study curtailed the public meetings and went ahead on its own. I was one of those invited to be part of the committee, and I am disappointed that we did not have the opportunity for more input to the program that will be presented. If you are interested in bicycle paths or increasing safety for pedestrians, I urge you to be in attendance.
I appreciated the response from some of you relative to Frank Ferry’s new book “Nucky Johnson: The Real Story of the Atlantic City Boardwalk Boss.” It was published by Margate-based ComteQ publishing.
Publisher Rob Huberman is working with Ferry on a Nucky pictorial book follow-up, as well as a biography of Nucky’s successor as political boss, the late Sen. Frank S. “Hap” Farley. “I really enjoy working with local authors, and working with Frank has been the best,” Huberman said. Ferry’s book can be ordered online at www.ComteQpublishing.com or by calling 609-487-9000.
Pinky’s Corner appears every Thursday in The Press. The Pinky’s Corner radio show airs 4 to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays on WOND 1400-AM. His TV show, “WMGM Presents Pinky” airs 7:30 p.m. Saturdays on NBC TV40. Email Pinky at: firstname.lastname@example.org.