Hi Everybody!! It’s another week and another blog. This week we are going to return to our series on cannabis regulation and legislation. We began the discussion with a series a few weeks back on California Proposition 65 which you can start reading about here.
More recently we have seen positive developments in terms of cannabis legislation and regulation. In the US alone only two states outlaw any cannabis use whatsoever, Idaho and Nebraska. The other 48 states have legalized cannabis use in varying degrees, from total legalization in such states as California, Colorado and Illinois to states that have legalized cannabis for medicinal use with limited amounts of THC.
In the world there is an overwhelming trend towards the acceptance of cannabis as a medical solution, with more than a few states leaning towards full legalization.
But as we all well know it wasn’t this way for well over 80 years the general global attitude towards cannabis has been uniformly negative. Cannabis was a major target in the global “war on drugs” and was seen by many in law enforcement as providing easy wins that could be used to beef up statistics that proved the war on drugs was working. It wasn’t.
It is generally recognized that the war on drugs has failed. But the damage done to those who were arrested and punished to fullest extent of the law for cannabis violations cannot be undone. We can however look at and learn from the mistakes of the past.
Where did it all begin?
As recently as the late 1920s cannabis was still being prescribed as a medicinal treatment for a number of ailments and was recognized by the medical community as being a time-honored herbal remedy.
It is recorded that cannabis was used to treat, among other things, sleep disorders and anxiety, female hysteria, asthma (cannabis cigarettes were prescribed for this), anesthetic and as a treatment for bunions and corns.
Unfortunately, cannabis was also associated with Mexican immigrants a which were viewed unfavorably in the eyes of the predominantly white American population. As a result, cannabis began to be referred to by the Mexican name Marihuana or Marijuana. This served to highlight the fact that it was being brought over by immigrants and was not a problem indigenous to America.
In the 1930s as the Great Depression was in full swing, resentment towards immigrants was on the rise. Jobs were limited and immigrants were seen as a threat. At the same time the US Treasury Department started the Federal Bureau of Narcotics from the Federal Bureau of Prohibition.
This is the first time in its history that the US took a direct and focused approach to dealing with narcotics. The founding commissioner of the Bureau was Harry J. Anslinger. He remained in that position for an unprecedented 32 years. He played a pivotal role in ensuring that cannabis was added to the UN 1961 Schedule of Narcotics. His actions have ensured that his name will forever live in infamy in the annals of cannabis history.
The Damage Done
The damage caused at the global level by this single person is incalculable. We are currently sitting on the cusp of a 90-billion-dollar cannabis industry. Cannabis, however, remains a part of the 1961 Schedule of Narcotics. This is frustrating at best.
Cannabis has been used medicinally for thousands of years. Yet the actions of a handful of ill-informed, self-interested and prejudiced men put an end to that. As we try to undo the damage done, there is another group of self-interested people trying to block progress. This time the group is the pharmaceutical industry.
The global legalization of cannabis will reduce the 29-billion-dollar market for pain management and anti-anxiety products. Pharma is also struggling to find their share in the 90-billion-dollar cannabis market. They have been pushing for chemical and non-organic medicinal solutions for too long. Attempting to capitalize on natural plant medicine will be seen as a deeply cynical and hypocritical money-grab.
So that’s where it all begins. It’s frustrating and irritating to be sure but nothing a good dose of California Craft CBD can’t cure. So stop by the shop and stock up for the weekend. We absolutely encourage you to do your own research on the subject. Join us week for Reefer Madness!!!