January 3, 2014

The state's marijuana dispensaries raked in $1 million on the first day of legalization, as Coloradoans braved winter weather and hours-long lines to be the first Americans to buy legal recreational weed. Marijuana was on sale at 24 stores, most located in Denver, and regulators said the roll-out of the nation's first legal pot industry went smoothly.

Channel 9News:

"It's a huge deal for me," said Andre Barr, a 34-year-old deliveryman who drove from Niles, Mich., to be part of the legal weed experiment. "This wait is nothing."

The world was watching as Colorado unveiled the modern world's first fully legal marijuana industry - no doctor's note required (as in 18 states and Washington, D.C.) and no unregulated production of the drug (as in the Netherlands). Uruguay has fully legalized pot but hasn't yet set up its system.

Colorado had 24 shops open Wednesday, most of them in Denver, and aside from long lines and sporadic reports of shoppers cited for smoking pot in public, there were few problems.

Naturally, not everyone is thrilled with legalization, 45 percent of Colorado voted against Amendment 64.

As skeptics watched in alarm, they warned that the celebratory vibe in Colorado masked "dangerous consequences."

"Wider marijuana availability, they say, would lead to greater illegal use by youth, and possibly more traffic accidents and addiction problems."

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