Boston's first marijuana store opened this week, with thousands expected to come through the door, but not everyone is cheering a ringing cash register.
Numerous marijuana stores have opened in the state of Massachusetts but the one in Boston named “Pure Oasis” is the first in a major East Coast city. It is also the first minority-owned business.
According to Fox Business, Pure Oasis expects as many as 1,000 customers a day which translates to a lot of tax revenue that supporters of legalized marijuana often point to.
"Certain money is just not worth taking," says Michael King, director of community alliances for Massachusetts Family Institute. "The other side is going to have all their statistics on why this is gonna give cops more time since they don't have to arrest people for marijuana use, and that money can go to other places...such as education."
King says Colorado has experienced bad results after voters there approved legal marijuana.
“You only need to ask your local police officer,” he says, “what they think about this."
The opening of the Boston store also means it will be among the few retail stores in the country owned and operated by people of color, who have struggled to break into the industry according to business experts.
Pure Oasis co-owner Kevin Hart told The Associated Press that opening the store is “bittersweet” and it comes with a “level of responsibility” to show others about business opportunities.
"It's our responsibility to take this win we got today,” he said of the business license, “and make sure people of color realize they have the same opportunities."
King has a much different response: It’s concerning to witness news reports glamorize the fact that Pure Oasis is minority owned, which sends a message to minority communities that in order for you to be successful, you need to open a pot shop.
"Sadly,” he tells OneNewsNow, “what happens is these pot shops go into minority areas and end up addicting the very people they want to start businesses."