Eighteen members of Congress have asked President Obama, in unison, to please reclassify marijuana from its current status as one of the most tightly regulated drugs from the Controlled Substance Act. Congress members say that marijuana’s current classification ‘makes no sense’ especially since it is being legalized as ‘medical marijuana’ state by state, and Class I drugs are those with ‘no medicinal value.’
Eighteen members are making the request that marijuana be taken out of this class of drugs that include heroin and LSD. A letter signed by the group ‘instructs the Attorney General Holder to delist or classify marijuana in a more appropriate way.’ The letter goes on to say that:
“Classifying marijuana as Schedule I at the federal level perpetuates an unjust and irrational system. . .Schedule I recognizes no medical use, disregarding both medical evidence and the laws of nearly half of the states that have legalized medical marijuana.”
The preeminent author of the letter, Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) asks that the government act rationally in creating federal policy that mirrors what states are doing.
Along with Representative Blumenauer’s signature, the Congressional letter sent Wednesday was co-signed by:
- Representatives Steve Cohen (D-TN)
- Sam Farr (D-CA)
- Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ)
- Mike Honda (D-CA)
- Jared Huffman (D-CA)
- Barbara Lee (D-CA)
- Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)
- Alan Lowenthal (D-CA)
- James McGovern (D-MA)
- James Moran (D-VA)
- Beto O’Rourke (D-TX)
- Jared Polis (D-CO)
- Mike Quigley (D-IL)
- Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA)
- Jan Schakowsky (D-IL)
- Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
- and Peter Welch (D-VT)
During President Obama’s recent State of the Union address, he mentioned that he would be willing to ‘act on the behalf of the American people,’ and push for descheduling since Congress and the DEA (who grants the executive branch authority to decriminalize marijuana or any drug) have been lame ducks.
Steph Sherer, Executive Director of Americans for Safe Access (ASA), the country’s largest medical marijuana advocacy group has said, “The president has the authority to reclassify marijuana and could exercise that authority at any time.”
Roughly 750,000 people are arrested every year currently (in states that don’t have recreational or medical marijuana use laws) and most marijuana users never use any other ‘illicit’ drug.
Cannabis L. sativa can treat cancer, and hemp is a great bio-fuel that can reduce our addiction to oil. Hemp also provides extremely strong textiles that don’t need as much water or pesticides to grow, as say, Bt cotton. The prison industry, and developing police states surely want to be able to harass us for marijuana use, and the oil companies still have the feds in a stranglehold, but there is absolutely no reason for marijuana to be a schedule one substance.