(from April 2022) If you love cannabis, or if you medically need cannabis, and you also love RVing, there is a lot to celebrate these days.
Accessible cannabis dispensaries and delivery services seem to be everywhere. In addition, 420-friendly consumption lounges, resorts, festivals, and even campgrounds (more on this coming soon) are slowly starting to appear around the country.
It’s little surprise. Marijuana, in some form—be it medical, adult-use, or CBD-only—is readily available in well over half the country. It’s been a LONG time coming, and it took a lot of activists a lot of hard work to get here.
Nonetheless, 19 states remain stuck in the Dark Ages. Get caught with cannabis in one of these states and you can find yourself in serious legal trouble. You might even find yourself behind bars.
In some of these states, marijuana is not even completely illegal!
Florida is a good example. In Florida, you are OK, IF, and ONLY IF, you have a doctor-prescribed medical marijuana card. However, if you get caught with even a little bit of cannabis without one of these cards, don’t expect leniency from law enforcement.
Currently, in Florida, possession of 20 grams or less of cannabis carries a penalty of one-year imprisonment and a fine of up to $1,000. Possessing more than 20 grams—that’s less than 1 ounce, folks—of cannabis is a felony offense, punishable with a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment and up to a $5,000 fine.
Others states could not care less if a doctor says you should use medical marijuana. The state government says you shouldn’t and it remains illegal in all forms.
For instance, Indiana, Iowa, and Kansas still impose jail time for possession of even small amounts of marijuana, even a TINY amount.
Where is weed illegal? New report examines old laws
To commemorate the 50-year anniversary of the release of the Shafer Commission report, the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) just released a new report: Behind the Times: The 19 States Where a Joint Can Still Land You in Jail.
Spearheaded by then-president Richard Nixon, the Shafer Commission investigated the effects of cannabis use back in 1971. Nixon was positive the report would help him further clamp down on the counter-culture “menace” by attacking them on the cannabis front.
However, the Shafer Report’s scientific findings came to the conclusion that small amounts of cannabis do not harm society and should not result in criminalization or jail time. Nixon was reported to have angrily thrown the report in the trash.
Not coincidentally, then New York mayor Fiorello LaGuardia commissioned a similar study, back in 1944. It came to the same conclusions as the Shafer Commission.
Public opinion has changed but these states haven’t
The new MPP report examines the current laws that lag the furthest behind public opinion, including the 19 states and the federal government which have not even “decriminalized” simple possession of cannabis.
It is important to note that the majority of support for legalizing marijuana exists in every one of the states where cannabis possession remains criminalized.
The report further delves into the penalties for simple possession and arrest rates, and provides a glimpse at some of the damage inflicted by draconian laws when states choose to use their limited law enforcement resources to arrest and jail adults for possessing a substance that by every measurable barometer is far safer than alcohol.
The 19 states where weed remains illegal
Know before you go!
When planning your RV journeys, check out the report before visiting any of the states on the list below and consider the often severe consequences of getting caught with marijuana in them. Plan accordingly.
Overall, several hundred thousand Americans are still arrested for violating states’ marijuana laws every year. More than 9 in 10 of those arrested are charged with low-level marijuana possession offenses, not sales or trafficking.
Nonetheless, any cannabis arrest can turn into a stressful and expensive ordeal involving fines, court appearances, legal bills, and/or community service in the best case scenarios and prison time in the worst.
So, which states are you most likely to get into trouble with when it comes to cannabis? What states have not even decriminalized possession of small personal amounts of cannabis? Where is weed illegal in this day and age?
If you’re a cannabis-loving RVer, avoid these states:
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
- Read the new Marijuana Policy report Behind the Times: The 19 States Where a Joint Can Still Land You in Jail
- Read the original Shafer Commission Report from 1972
- Read the original La Guardia Report from 1944
Thanks for the helpful article! Education is the way forward.
Billy Bob needs directions to Mar a Lago
I’ll wait till ’24, he’ll be much closer to my home base!
Thank you for this informative article. Microdosing has helped so much with migraines. I don’t want to return to the days of pain so I’ll be conscientious when traveling.
Great article! Very helpful to know!
I don’t smoke, it knocks me out (altho I’ve yet to try full sativa) and I don’t like the loss of control. But I’ve always been an advocate of legalization. My veteran wife uses the lotion and pen for chronic hip pain.
I’ve never seen someone get raped or beaten by someone who’s high. Alcohol is way more dangerous, imo.
The hardest for us is Wisconsin. We live in Illinois and Wisconsin has some amazing sites!
WI keeps it illegal thanks to the tavern league and tons in tax revenue go to MI and IL.
Oh, this is fun. Wish I’d gotten here earlier.
Marijuana needs to be legalized at the Federal level. Like alcohol, it isn’t ever going away, but its criminalization ruins lives.
Sadly, here in California I have seen people smoking marijuana and driving. Wish it did not happen, but it does.
As well as consuming alcohol and driving. No difference in responsibility.
Want irony; collectively spent billions to deter humans from ingesting toxic cigarette smoke containing carcinogenic chemical compounds. But you dope smokers love toting up, injesting who knows what. Thats irony.
Preliminary studies from the clown state of CO, one of the first to decriminalize it, showed a huge increase of bumgadins. The clown politicians thought it was a revenue stream, but it appears now, until they hide and lie the data away, that the costs outweigh the revenue. Large increase in unless waists, roming the streets of Denver after decriminalization.
Billy, you should get your facts straight before you run your mouth. And I never heard of anyone toting up. Did you mean toking up or……….
Spoken by a true dopper Cee, Cee Ryder.
Your education level is showing… learn to spell
He also means doper, not dopper
Maybe you could get a job writing Reefer Madness II.
I 2nd that!
I see I’ve awakened a few doppers out there. Cool!
Wow – lots of opinions and no facts to back it up.
Oh Billy you’re talking out your backside again. Cite studies, show some facts please or go sit down.
None of your business what other people do. Therapy doesn’t always work but it might.
Nah, doesnt work that way Unc. You see, there are laws, and violating those laws have consequences.
Excellent & resourceful article. Thank you! Here in Floriduh we have a saying, “come on vacation, leave on probation”.
Love your state. No nonsense, and not a haven for bumgadins.
Oh Billy Bob. Who hurt you?
The current administration, what about you?
As a disabled combat Vet, I use edibles and CBD rubs to help with the chronic pain I’ve had since ‘the sandbox’. It is effective for me, and should be studied as an alternative to ‘BIG PHARMA’.
I have to wonder if anyone else noticed that it’s ‘illegal’ in the states where they rail against ‘Big Government’, the ‘Nanny State’ and are all about ‘personal freedom’? Yeah, gotta love the hypocritical, ‘do as I say’ mentality of the Red States.
The states that are outlawing men participating in womens sports, those states?
Stay on target…stay on target.
Analogy, my friend. Dig Deep.. Moody Blues…
Completely agree, Jeff. It helps my anxiety and blood pressure. My doctors keep wanting to put me on blood pressure meds with known side effects. Cannabis has put me at 120/80 consistently with that being the only change. Quite incredible. Personal choice. Personal freedom.
Yet those who preach these things tell me I can’t do this. I must abide by big pharma. Is anyone else confused by big red (or big orange)? Funded by big alcohol, big tobacco, and big pharma they know this wonderful natural alternative, that is easy to grow, will take their profits away.
SC legislature is currently discussing a medical use law. We’ll see how it falls out.
No matter which state you may be in, it is illegal on any and all Federal lands.
Right, like that keeps anyone from going there.
Correct. As it should be. This will run its course, kill 10s of thousands from dope smoking operation of motor vehicles. Then mothers AGAIN (see MADD), will have to step up and cause the reversal of the erroneous addition of another intoxicant introduced into an already lunitic society, after incalculable maiming of their children and loved ones.
Never touched the stuff and honestly don’t know what it smells like. I guess it’s that I’m cheap. Don’t need to spend hard earned money on something that goes up in smoke.
Wouldn’t need the cost that go with a violation neither. I see those that spend money on drugs and alcohol and know how much better there lives would be if they’d pay the rent, buy decent food for their family.
As Arnold Schwarzenegger once said nobody cares if you smoke a joint or two.
I don’t use it or drink more than a beer or two at a time but who really cares now a day’s. Unless you are trafficking it and have many pounds in your possession the police won’t do anything.
The only thing that concerns me is the drug stays in your body longer than most alcohol and if driving after a night of partaking in a few joints you could still be impaired.
The drug stays in your body and registers in your blood, however impairment does NOT. Which is why those per se driving tests mean absolutely NOTHING.
NOBODY but NOBODY ever insinuated you should drive impaired. Not on weed, not on alcohol. That would be a stupid thing to do. YEESH!
Whats funny is your belief system. Now that is something to behold.
Spew hate somewhere else
Why don’t you dope smokers lighten up. Your accusations are not accurate. Your argument raised is without substance, and you should tone down a bit and bring factual discussion to a civil level. I’m surprised at the conviction of y’all. You need to understand that there will be more carnage from use. Its a fact already.
Stop focusing on the medical application as a cover to your argument. There are certainly studies to demonstrate its benefits. But rather deal with the teaser title of the article;
“Where is weed illegal? 19 states cannabis-loving RVers should avoid”
I personally don’t use the stuff, however, it is time to decriminalize marijuana use nationwide. It is 2022, not 1950. I agree that one should not be driving or operating machinery while under the influence of any drug but for some recreational use, why not? Who is it hurting?
It’s the drunks around the campfire causing the problems, not the people who quietly toke a doob. They likely just go to sleep. They are certainly not raising a ruckus.
Sure, add another intoxicant into society, and say dont operate a MV. Yeah, thats a hell of a good idea.
Why not let men compete in womens sports, and teach transgenderism to kindergartners too, while we’re at it.
It’s already there, bubba. Has been for longer than you’ve been alive.
Not sure what your angry rant about transgender and sports has to do with the article. Seek help.
Remember if you have a medical marijuana card for whatever reason you loose your 2nd Amendment rights. This is a Federal law.
Which I think is a stubborn leftover from the “drug war” mentality, the idiotic Schedule 1 designation of a substance that’s proven to be less harmful than alcohol, and targeting of non-violent cannabis users. Isn’t it interesting that in much of the US you can stroll into a bar carrying a firearm, yet possessing the same firearm and using a substance that calms you down is frowned upon by so many states.
I usually don’t accuse the government of lies and propaganda, but in this case, they were full of it.
The movie “Reefer madness” was intended to be serious, but it’s a total joke. Pot was once claimed to cause black men to rape white women. And of course the old ‘gateway drug’ conspiracy, which, yes, is true of most all hard drug users, but the reality is the vast majority of pot smokers do NOT move on to harder drugs. This philosophy was also mentioned in “Breaking Bad”, which I have no doubt much of law enforcement actually believes. So, all this combined made it illegal for decades, and kept people deathly afraid of it as the ruination of society. I often think of all the money the gov’t could have made off of pot instead of all the money they’ve spent fighting it.
Personally, I hate the feeling I get from alcohol, so pot suits me fine.
Chris, so you don’t “get kicks from cocaine” Blazing Saddles Clevon Little.
If you “stroll into a bar carrying a firearm”… lady, where on earth are you coming from. You have no idea about proper use of firearms, saying such an idiotic statement like that, shows you need further training, so better sign up quick.
Please dont ever ” stroll into a bar carrying a firearm”. It would be against all your training.
Absolutely on point. As a dealer (gun not dope) when you purchase a firearm, you are required to answer the question on drug use. No answer, no gun. And if you get busted for some reason and they find out you committed perjury on a Federal firearm form, plan on a stayca at the nearest fed pen and a large mandatory donation to the national deficit repayment fund. Now as far as guns you bought or inherited from uncle Brandon, state firearm laws will also come into play if you get busted for being high. Firearms and dope/alcohol don’t mix. Stay frosty out there.
Great point. Thanks
Hey Crow, dare you to refer to case law on that. Ill save you the research, it doesn’t exist.
Billy Bob…try “Wilson v Lynch” 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Ninth Circus doesn’t have jurisdiction outside the left coast. Read the decision, doesn’t apply. Try gain.
I doubt TX or UT will ever legalize. I remember in the 70s where in TX you could get more jail time for possession of a couple joints than murder. Insane laws, exacerbated by the “gateway drug” fallacy. If you’re into watching people get arrested for pot watch COPS reruns from 10 or even 20 years ago.
You can CDB openly here in TX.
Of course it was more jail time for doppers, in Texas “we have the death penalty, and we use it” Ron White
I don’t think your list of states is correct. Pa allows medical marijuanna if you have a medical card Not sure if they honor other states medical cards Not sure if it’s legal to use marijuanna in Pa state parks since alcoholic beverages isn’t allowed. It’s not that Public opinion has changed with marijuanna. It’s our politicians greed for the tax dollars they get and waste from it. Our federal politicians are working on legalizing marijuanna. In their case it’s all about getting votes.
My list of states IS correct and I talk about this in the article with Florida as an example, just because they have a medical program does NOT mean they have decriminalized if you DO NOT have a card. Please read the article and click through to the reports. TRUST ME, I have checked sources and do know what I talking about.
Wow, talk about condescending…
Dont pay attention to the writer, she lost credibility with the teaser title she used.
Where is weed illegal? 19 states cannabis-loving RVers should avoid
No way should any form of pulling an RV , driving a motor home or driving any vehicle while Drunk on alcohol or stoned on Marijuana should be advocated or allowed . I have seen way to much damage caused by those who advocate being stoned.
Well, nobody is saying that.
DUH! Who the heck said that? NOBODY DID cause that would be STUPID.
Cheri, go easy on Chris, he’s one smart fella!
Hey Chris… READ THE TITLE TO THE ARTICLE
Hey Dane, see Chris’s comment. Yeah, nobody said that so of course doppers wouldn’t drive. Wow.
I think BBT shouldn’t be DWBBT. That’s scary as hell.
Now I know which states I can camp in and not be bothered by potheads. When I was in Vietnam I told my squad if they used pot or anything else within 12 hrs of a patrol they didn’t need to worry about “Charlie” they need to worry about me. I don’t like people who use it and will not tolerate it.
Amen. Camping or any outdoor activity should not be mixed with stoned participants and the thought of being in a combat situation with stoned backup is beyond scary.
Do you feel the same way about the rowdy drunks in the next campsite? Because the pot smokers aren’t going to be raising the roof like the drunks will.
And if you’re facing a combat situation in a campground, it might be time to move.
Plus one for this comment. I’m always baffled by people, many of whom drink cocktails and beer on a regular basis, go to bars and parties, who have probably witnessed at least their share of awful behavior by drunk people, think that marijuana is worse. When was the last time you saw someone stoned start a brawl?
Your kinda right there Ellen. It’s usually the drunks using the doppers for punching bags 🙂
Um, no dude. But they will be raiding my cookout!!!
Take it easy man, that big vein in your forehead is going to pop
Erik, mellow dude. Chill out man, everything is groovy.
Lol! Good one Billinous. After seeing the angry nonsense from Billy bob I needed good laugh 🤣
Cee, Cee Cee Ryder, why is everything seem “angry”. Isn’t dope suppose the mellow you out.
Yeah, drunks are much more fun to be around.
What a ridiculous, hateful and offensive comment. I am glad I never have to camp around you because willful IGNORANCE is what I cannot tolerate.
You didn’t expect reasoned thinking from some of this group, did you?
Nope. I expect “old” thinking.
Yeah, its “old” thinking to be thinking someone using an intoxicant would go and do something stupid LIKE OPERATE A MOTOR VEHICLE. Geesh, how dumb.
Thats my exact thought, who knew 🙂
You got my two cents, didnt ya 🙂
I thought Chris’ comment was funny. So sorry you snapped back and called names. Maybe you should go have a toke. HAHA
she was replying to Bob P, not me. But thanks.
Smoke up dude, it sure couldnt effect your reasoning, IMHO
So Bob is wrong for not wanting his soldiers in Vietnam, all dopped up going out on patrol. You really should clarify this one for us.
Man, I hear you. You think smoking is bad. But you are not going to change any minds with your bad spelling and fake news. Please, go be sober somewhere people will believe your lies.
You know, the lame excuse people uneducated about cannabis used to use was “What about the children.” You are using “What about the soliders in Vietnam?” Really. Well I’ll tell you as I work with a lot of veteran groups. A lot of them would not have survived without it. And they and veterans of other wars would not survive without it now when dealing with PTSD and other issues they came back with. It is safer than alcohol, prescription drugs, and even over the counter drugs. PLEASE EDUCATE yourself. Here is a good website, the Weed for Warriors Project, that might be able to help, IF you can find yourself capable of opening your mind just a little bit so some facts can get in. But stop making ridiculous and hateful statements about a subject you know absolutely NOTHING about.
The ignorant scream the loudest.
Thank you for your service to service members and veterans.
Here’s another good group the Veterans Cannbis Project. Just because something may or may not be right FOR YOU does not mean that the rest of the world feels the same, or that you should have the right to trash a natural substance and the people who use it, because YOU do not understand it. That is the height of rudeness and arrogance. Good luck to you, I have nothing else to say to you.
Cheri, chill out. You should have titled the article differently, rather than go for the teaser route. Make note of that in your future endeavors.