Cannabis

Blazing Forward: Marijuana Reform Momentum Continues to Build With No Signs of Slowing

I would say that this has been a crazy week in marijuana reform in the United States, but it seems to me that a week full of new marijuana news is becoming more of a normal (or NORML) occurrence. Marijuana reform is moving at lightning speed in the United States. The American way of life is changing daily and we are in the midst of a huge cultural shift. What an exciting time to be alive!

In the past two weeks, we have seen some incredible progress in American marijuana policy. First, on June 23, 2011, Barack Obama announced that his administration would be reducing restrictions on the study of the medicinal benefits of marijuana. Before this announcement, if a laboratory wanted to research the medicinal benefits of marijuana, but that laboratory’s research was not being funded by the federal government, that laboratory had to seek approval from the Public Health Service through a review process. As you can imagine, permission was not given liberally.

And in case you were unaware of this little factoid, the United States government owns one of the only patents on cannabis and even states in its patent that marijuana has medicinal value. Yet, according to federal law, marijuana is a Schedule I drug that allegedly has no medicinal value. But this does not prevent the government from keeping a huge marijuana depository in Mississippi.

Next, Miami-Dade county decriminalized possession of less than “20 grams or less of marijuana, enough for about three dozen joints,” according to the Miami Herald. This story, however, is a little more amusing than your average marijuana news. Instead of calling it “decriminalization,” they enacted a law that gives discretion to police officers about whether she/he wants to simply issue a $100 civil citation or charge a person with a criminal misdemeanor. Sneaky, sneaky. I like it.

Third, Minnesota’s medicinal program went into effect today. Although it is restricted to non-smokable uses only and is only available for a few ailments, it’s progress. Finally, the governor of Louisiana and presidential candidate Bobby Jindal signed a limited medicinal marijuana bill. Repeat after me, it’s progress.

I have been so inspired by the flood of news on this topic that I made a handy map to show you where in the United States marijuana is: (1) Legal (indicated by leaves); (2) available/legalized for medicinal purposes of some sort; and (3) states that have enacted decriminalization laws state-wide. The star at the bottom of Florida is a special shout out to my second home, Miami. If you want to learn more about each state specifically, click here.

US MJ Map Final 7-1-15

There are only 11 states left in the U.S. without some form of marijuana reform. This is a sign of what is coming. The internet and unlimited access to real information is what powers this movement. And as long as more information continues to roll in, people opposing reform will find themselves incredibly outnumbered. Never do yourself the disservice of not learning the facts. Rather, embrace the human spirit and the insatiable drive for clarity of purpose and knowledge.

“In this world you’re either growing or you’re dying so get in motion and grow.”
Lou Holtz

A Higher Power: Marijuana Reform Series Introduction

Marijuana reform is a fast-moving policy topic in the United States right now. Marijuana and its prohibition are very complicated topics with countless dimensions. Because of this, it is my intention to try to narrow down the issues I discuss in each post so that I can give more issues a more thorough analysis. Welcome to the first of many posts on this topic.

These posts are in no way intended to encourage you to break the law. These posts are intended to encourage you to change the law.

Before you read on, consider the following quote by Thomas Jefferson:

I was bold in the pursuit of knowledge, never fearing to follow truth and reason to whatever results they led, and bearding every authority which stood in their way.

Math is considered to be the universal language because everyone in the world uses math and no matter where you are in the world, 1+1 will always equal 2. Much like math, there is a universal truth about marijuana–every person on the planet seems to have been built on a molecular level to benefit from the use marijuana. More importantly, marijuana seems to be so ingrained in our DNA that it appears to be virtually impossible to overdose on marijuana. Further, there has been no definitive evidence showing that there are even any negative long-term effects of adult marijuana use.

There is also tremendous evidence that every civilization since the beginning of time has used marijuana or its ancestor, hemp, for various reasons. Historical evidence shows that as early as 2737 B.C., the “Emperor Shen Neng of China was prescribing marijuana tea for the treatment of gout, rheumatism, [and] malaria . . .”  A rapidly growing body of marijuana research is showing that the plant can be used to treat multiple ailments and diseases including: Alzheimer’s, Crohn’s disease, depression, anxiety, ALS, HIV/AIDS, epilepsy, etc. For a very comprehensive list click here. New developments in marijuana research occur almost daily. Marijuana has even been shown to cure brain cancer in mice. Yes, I said cure.  Marijuana has also been shown to destroy certain types of cancer cells and reduce growth in tumors in human patients.

I am not a religious person, but there is something about this plant that seems transcendent. Every human being on earth is born with an endocannabinoid system littered with cannabinoid receptors. In fact, scientists believe that humans have more cannabinoid receptors in their body than any other receptor system.

Science is telling us that our brains and our bodies seem to have been built in perfect harmony with the marijuana plant. Now, I am not a religious person, but as more and more information becomes available, it is hard to deny that marijuana is unlike anything else on the planet. I believe we are only beginning to scratch the surface of its beneficial uses and I cannot wait to see what happens next.

It is time to change the perception of marijuana and its users. It is time to set aside all of the misinformation and rebuff anyone who attempts to perpetuate it. Everyone opposing marijuana reform better hang on to their panties because it’s coming whether you are ready for it or not. I encourage you all to join your local NORML chapter and get involved because marijuana reform is in our hands.

Now for your viewing pleasure, Grannies smoking weed for the first time:

Peace and love.