This Week in Cannabis: D.C. Still in the Weeds, Congress OKs Marijuana MedEvac, Kids Brains Not on Drugs, Anchorage Stays Anchored to Legalization, and A Green Leaf Party
A Congress Keen on Medical Marijuana?
Medical Marijuana is safe. Or at least in the states that have legalized its use. The LA Times is reporting the tome that is the congressional omnibus spending bill has made a special provision that stops the Feds from prosecuting medical marijuana users and dispensaries.
This represents a monumental decision from lawmakers—the same lawmakers who still classify marijuana as a Schedule I drug that has no medical purpose.
Regardless of the apparent irony, the decision is a big win for marijuana advocates and crusaders. It also represents a major shift in the federal government’s general position regarding a state’s (and voters’) rights to determine how they incorporate medical marijuana into their states.
Marijuana Business Daily has been kind enough to create a chart of those states that have the highest patient densities. It should be interesting to see if those figures change as a result.
Legalization is more than likely still a long chalk away from the federal “two thumbs up,” but the fact that enough were swayed to okay the provision makes it a big step in that general direction.
D.C. Could Still be Good to Go Green
Despite it looking like the freshly inked “cromnibus” spending bill spelled certain doom for Initiative 71, an article published by the Huffington Post maintains there is a slim chance that pot legalization could still happen in the Nation’s Capital.
It would seem that the devil is in the details. There is a slight discrepancy in the wording used on the bill itself and Andy Harris’s rider. More specifically, the words “enact” (used on the bill) and “carry out” (Andy Harris’s rider).
Supporters in the House have pounced on it and believe that it could be the crack in the door that they need. N.Y. Democratic representative Jose Serrano can perhaps better explain why:
“Since it can be argued that D.C.’s Initiative 71 is self-executing and that it was enacted when an overwhelming majority of voters supported it in the November elections, this means that Section 809 [of the omnibus] should not apply to the ballot initiative. Based on this premise, the government of the District of Columbia should be able to move forward with the legalization of marijuana despite the rider included in the omnibus bill.”
It’s comforting to know that the different factions of fervent opposition to marijuana reform in the U.S. can’t quite seem to get on the same page.
Anchorage Is Still Good to Go Green
According to the Alaska Dispatch, an Anchorage Assembly has shot down a proposal by marijuana opponents that would’ve banned the sale of marijuana in the capital.
Seems like there are still a few weeds that need to be pulled in the Assembly though, as the vote only passed by a margin of 9-2.
Not Quite a Teenage Wasteland
Marijuana legalization hasn’t quite had the effect that some opponents feared. In fact, a U.S. News article highlighted a recent Monitoring the Future survey by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which reports that marijuana is actually down from last year and that it is more difficult to come by for high school kids.
So who’s really blowing smoke here?
Leaf it Alone
The Green Leaf Party is a thing. And they are out to stop “the hounding of marijuana smokers.” It hasn’t been all that successful up to now in the Israeli political arena, going 0-and-5 in the last five elections.
However, they aren’t giving up according to the Jerusalem Post. The organization are throwing their hats back into the ring, this time under the leadership of Oren Leibovitz, the founder and editor of cannabis.com.