Oaksterdam the Red Light Disctrict of Northern California

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The portion of downtown Oakland near where Telegraph hits Broadway. In that area, there is a proliferation of medical marijuana clubs where people (usually with prescriptions) can buy marijuana and marijuana products without the fear of legal ramification.


Yes…an area of Oakland known for pot clubs, pot universities is quickly becoming the next big thing. At the main campus, the walls display photos of the school’s 23,000 graduates, who range in age from 18 to 65 and represent every state and 30 countries. Last month, about 30 California lawmakers drove from Sacramento for lectures on taxation and regulation, studying up for the possible passage next fall of an initiative that would legalize marijuana for recreational use.




Medical marijuana is legal in the state of California. However, Federal Law still makes marijuana a controlled substance. This puts ALL medical marijuana use into a grey area.  This is why a California doctor can’t “prescribe” marijuana for you. He can only make a “recommendation” that you may be in possession of certain amounts necessary to treat a diagnosable medical condition. He can’t prescribe weed for you because the drug is by definition illegal under Federal law.

This may be changing. The Feds recently announced that they would not be suing those States that had enacted full legalization of marijuana in their state. And there is a strong political movement to remove cannabis from Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act. But for now, the bottom line is that in California medical marijuana is legal at the state level but still illegal under Federal Law.

How does this affect you? What it means is that at anytime, anywhere a perfectly “legal” California marijuana dispensary can be raided by Federal agents. It also means that you need to be particularly cautious anytime you find yourself dealing with Federal law. For example, since the FAA is under Federal law, travelling with medical marijuana is a violation of Federal law and therefore a  strict “no no”.  When traveling with your medical cannabis you will be subject to federal laws, and risk confronting law enforcement who does not fully understand the legality of your medicine.  For this reason, if you make the trip up to Oaksterdam from Southern California for example, be sure to keep your medicine locked in the truck.  If possible try to have to dispensary vacuum seal the dried flowers with a food sealer, which will eliminate the smell of your marijuana.

672 Apr. 20