Even though smoking pot may cause cancer, a dozen states have medical marijuana laws in place. California, home to many medical marijuana clubs — like the appropriately named Timothy Leary Medical Dispensary — now boasts a few 24-hour medical marijuana vending machines.
These pot vending machines (PVMs) are kind of like ATMs, but filled with a different kind of green. Inventor Vincent Mehdizadeh, created the PVM for easier, uncomplicated buying methods for the already complicated position of being a medical marijuana user. To see how the PVM dispenses the goods
To purchase a prescription, up to an ounce a week, you need to be an approved medical marijuana user registered in Mehdizadeh's database. The machines will require fingerprint identification (how very high tech — pun intended) and a prepaid card with a magnetic strip. After the card and fingerprint are verified, a bright green envelop drops out of the slot with the prescription doled out in 1/8-ounce increments. The idea behind these machines is fairly practical. They offer convenience, lower prices, and privacy for medicinal users who suffer from chronic pain, lack of appetite, and other ailments. The machine also buys some safety for the pot dispensaries from thefts and raids. Yes, raids. The DEA and the federal government do not recognize individual states' medical marijuana laws.
Will these vending machines be sitting next to traditional ones selling Snickers bars and Doritos? Nope, PVMs will only be available at specific medical dispensary buildings. Interesting business model or bad idea? Tell me what you think in the comments section below.