Don't Expect Congress to Move Quickly on Marijuana
Considering the DEA just published a report in January 2014 titled, "The Dangers and Consequences of Marijuana Abuse," it is unlikely the agency will pursue this. In it, the DEA states that, "legalization of marijuana, no matter how it begins, will come at the expense of our children and public safety." The DEA says it supports research into the use of marijuana as a medicine, but also quotes the FDA in saying there is no sound scientific study supporting medicinal use for marijuana, even though 21 states have approved legalization for medicinal use. "I think it's clear that it's not a schedule 1 drug in that there are clear therapeutic benefits," said Blumenauer.
In fact, there is very little in this report that is complimentary towards marijuana and it is overwhelmingly negative. For example, the report only lists the medical associations that have reservations about marijuana and lists none that are positive. None. It's this kind of lop-sided approach that Congressman Cohen says hurts the DEA's credibility with the public. Suffice to say, the DEA will not be initiating proceedings anytime soon to change the schedule 1 classification.
"To me it's a fait accompli that marijuana is going to be legalized in the United States," said St. Pierre. "My guesstimate is that the Congress could end marijuana prohibition by 2020, maybe 2022"
Written by Debra Borchardt in New York.
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