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CADILLAC, Mich. — When Michigan legalized cannabis for recreational use back in 2018, many throughout the state rejoiced, sensing a sea change in individual rights and sensible legal drug policy.
But what small towns like Cadillac never could’ve prepared for was the devastating avalanche of tax revenue earmarked to improve their schools, public services and infrastructure.
“You think you’re safe, and then bam, the money starts pouring in,” said Cadillac, Mich. mayor Sheila Geisler, whose town of 1,200 is reeling from tens of thousands of additional dollars earmarked to expand broadband access and emergency services thanks to their new recreational dispensary. “I was a proponent of legalization, but I never could’ve predicted the hardship of writing all of these valid checks to pay for so many public programs that had fallen by the wayside. So now I just get to fund everything? How does that make any sense?”
“Sure, it seems great to have fully updated science labs and better funding for our teachers, but how are students ever going to learn how to use Windows 95 or navigate the ‘blue screen of death’ without laptops the Army dumped in our landfills in 2001?” wondered Cadillac High School Principal Gary Longman. “How will we reach our students without decades-old Dell Inspirons? These are the problems those potheads never think about.”
Like many school administrators throughout the state, Longman has made many pivotal updates to his staff, classrooms, and educational support systems since legalization, but noted that the perpetual strain of having an actual, solvent budget thanks to a sensible and easily attainable tax revenue was taking a real toll on his mental health. “What are my teachers and I supposed to do with these raises? Buy cars produced after the 90s?” said Longman. “Come on. This is Michigan. It’s our right to run our 1991 Ford Tempos into the ground, and then live in them when they’re no longer mobile.”
Indeed, many residents have raised similar concerns.
“Our parks have more funding, our garbage pickup is now every week, and we have a local arts budget for the first time since 1997,” said resident Wanda Carmichael. “What seemed like a simple tax on safe, recreational and medicinal cannabis is forcing all these vibrant, publically funded necessities down our throats. My daughter wanted to learn how to do pottery, and I took her to a well-lit rec center and she took a class. It’s sick.”
Local alderman Lane Radleberger agreed. “This regularly scheduled trash disposal has stopped the onslaught of ravenous racoons and deer on our streets. How am I supposed to teach my daughter about wildlife now?” he said. “How can I show her that you treat a trash raccoon bite differently than a trash squirrel bite, or a trash possum bite? I don’t understand money, and I never will.”
When asked about the possibility of nationwide recreational legalization, Mayor Geisler offered a stern, dire warning. “Please, learn from our mistakes, or an influx of cash to effectively run your cities and towns might be right around the corner,” she said. “If it can happen here, it can happen anywhere.”
Joe Rapp is an improviser, graphic designer and unknown local celebrity in Minneapolis, MN. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter @fakejoerapp
Disclaimer: This Article Is a Joke
Speaking of absurdity, did you know there are still over 40,000 people locked up on nonviolent cannabis-related charges around the US? It’s time to let them out.