Even with 29 states and the District of Columbia having voted in favor of legal cannabis (in one form or another), cannabis activists still have plenty of room to worry when it comes to keeping it as-is or, preferably, expanding the program further. That’s because of cannabis’ status as a Schedule I drug, meaning it has a high potential of abuse and no medicinal value.
You’d have to be living under a rock to not know that the previous statements are utter bull. Most of the states with cannabis laws are protecting the rights of medical marijuana patients. It is proven that cannabis is an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, superfood with different benefits with each method of ingesting.
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Apparently, the GOP is now coming out of the woodwork and out from under rocks to support the latest piece of legislation that protects state rights to medical cannabis, demonstrating a dramatic shift in marijuana mood on The Hill. As Forbes reported, this is, “the first time ever a provision protecting state medical marijuana laws is being included in base funding legislation for the U.S. Department of Justice.”
Talk about making progress in leaps. Encouragingly, Don Murphy, director of federal policies for the Marijuana Policy Project, said, “It’s taken years of hard work by patients and their advocates, but we’ve finally reached the point where even in a U.S. Senate controlled by Republicans, a medical marijuana provision is not considered a poison pill and its support requires no further debate.”
For states to be able to move forward without fear of prosecution when it comes to the medical side of things is a true blessing for the cannabis community at large. Things were looking a little dicey when Sessions rescinded the Obama-era Cole Memo, which protected states from prosecution, but with the new protections in place and ready to be signed off on, it’s good news all around. Almost.
The provision doesn’t mention anything about the recreational market and protections for it’s rapidly growing industry. The beauty here is that self-regulation is a booming concept and it’s lending legitimacy in the cannabis spaces that need it most. From lab testing to seed to sale tracking, the future does look bright from coast-to-coast.