Tags Posts tagged with "Federal Ban"

Federal Ban

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A group of lawmakers is yet again making another attempt to legalize marijuana on a federal level. Representative Thomas Garret sponsored the Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act, which loosens the marijuana restriction and leaves it up to the state to make laws about recreational and medical marijuana.

States that have already legalized marijuana such as Colorado and California still violate federal law, making the ground work more confusing for establishing marijuana laws in the united states.

Eleven other sponsors introduced the bill back in February, however, they had very little effect on Capitol Hill. Garrett is in great hope that he will gain support even though President Trump has a firm stance to enhance federal laws on marijuana regulation. Garrett says that there are “redeeming medical uses for cannabis,” however, he does not always feel that way.

“The first time I heard the term ‘medicinal marijuana’ 25 or 30 years ago, I probably chuckled,” Garrett said on Wednesday.

He later started prosecuting marijuana users in Virginia.
Garrett stated: “My background on this issue is shaped by my own experiences as a criminal prosecutor, where in fact, I did enforce the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia as they relate to marijuana, and some would say, did so quite vigorously.”

Gradually, he became sick of “creating criminals out of people who otherwise follow the law.” As a result, he started to suggest legalizing marijuana.

Garrett said: “If there’s anything I cannot tolerate as a citizen and as a prosecutor, it is the unequal application of justice.”
Representative Tulsi Gabbard has the same concerns regarding current marijuana laws.

“Every 42 seconds someone is arrested for the use or possession of marijuana, turning every-day Americans into criminals, tearing families apart,” Gabbard said, “The question before us is not whether you think marijuana use is good or bad, or how you feel about this issue, but whether we should be turning people into criminals.”

The president of Smart Approaches to Marijuana Kevin Sabet, who opposes legalizing marijuana, chided the “Cheech and Chong ideology.”

He said: “The marijuana industry is the next Big Tobacco of our time, and history will not look kindly upon those who enabled lobbyists and special interest groups to gain a foothold in putting profit ahead of public health and safety,”

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Hidden away deep in the 1,603-page federal spending measure is a clause that stops the federal government’s banning of medical marijuana which is a huge change regarding drug policies.

The bill was passed over the weekend, and this is the first time that Congress has approved of a nationwide legislation supported by cannabis reformers. This stops about twenty years of strain between states and the government over medical marijuana. Now, because of the bill, states that have legalized medical marijuana do not need to fear that the Drug Enforcement Administration will come in raiding their stores; agents are no longer allowed to do so.

The Obama administration has followed that rule since last year as policy, but now, the measure approved the spending bill, which Obama will sign sometime this week, will make it an actual law. Marijuana reformers have encouraged Congress to support the administration’s policy, which they said could easily be changed depending on who comes into office next year.

Also, from the point of view of activists, Congress’ decision showed that there is a new association in marijuana politics; Republicans are actually beginning to support states’ rights to allow the use of marijuana, a drug that the federal government considers to be just as dangerous as heroin.

“This is a victory for so many,” said Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, the measure’s co-author. According to him, the approval represents “the first time in decades that the federal government has curtailed its oppressive prohibition of marijuana.”

At the moment, thirty-two states including the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana or its extracts in order to treat illnesses, which began in the 1990s. Even two decades ago, some stated were supportive of decriminalization. However, since that time, the medical marijuana movement has taken a huge leap. The Drug Enforcement Administration still considers marijuana of the most dangerous drugs with no medical benefits.

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