DEA and Justice Department at Odds on Medical Pot Research

Photo by Justin Cannabis.

A year ago, the DEA began accepting applications to grow more marijuana for research. They now have 25 proposals to consider, but they need the Department of Justice (DOJ) to sign-off in order to move forward.

So, of course, Jeff Sessions is ignoring them. Actually, he’s blocking them.

Read more at High Times

State Lawmakers’ Group Demands Feds Remove Cannabis from Controlled Substances Act

Photo by Justin Cannabis. 

An influential organization representing lawmakers all over the United States is calling for the federal government to eliminate the cannabis plant from the confines of the Controlled Substances Act.

In a resolution published on Monday, a group known as the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) went to the mat for cannabis reform, pushing for marijuana to be removed from its Schedule I classification. The goal is to give the cannabis industry easier access to banking solutions, while improving public safety by making it more difficult for criminal organizations to target dispensaries and other all-cash businesses.

Read more at High Times

Pot Matters: Flashback—DEA Responds to Early Medical Marijuana Initiatives

In November 1996, voters in California and Arizona passed historic ballot initiatives to legalize medical marijuana, starting a politically historical era of reform that so far has resulted in a total of 27 states with similar laws and eight with laws legalizing recreational marijuana use.

On December 2, 1996, Thomas Constantine, administrator of the DEA appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee to discuss the issues surrounding the passage of Proposition 215 in California and Proposition 200 in Arizona. In his prepared remarks Constantine expressed the DEA’s concern over these initiatives with a warning to Congress and the nation. Remarkably, the prohibitionist argument today remains an echo of Constantine’s 1996 testimony.

Constantine expressed concern that “most Americans have not yet grasped the consequences” of what had just happened, and need to know that these initiatives were not “local, grass-root efforts, but part of a well-orchestrated, well-financed national movement… to legalize drugs.” The initiatives were not about showing compassion for patients, they were part of a devious conspiracy launched by billionaire George Soros and others “including representatives from the Progressive [insurance] Corporation, the Mens’ Warehouse and… pro-legalization groups… such as the Drug Policy Foundation.”

Read more at High Times

Why Jeff Sessions’ Successor Could Be Worse for Drug Reform

Someday—perhaps someday very soon, judging by how often his boss is harassing him into obstructing justice, online—Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III will no longer be attorney general of the United States.

When Sessions goes, the U.S. will be different: An authoritarian embodiment of the Republicans’ Southern Strategy, who has no compunction against lying under oath about meetings with foreign agents trying to influence the democratic process, will no longer run the U.S. Justice Department.

That will be good!

Read more at High Times

Federal Lawsuit Against Sessions and DEA Says MMJ’s Schedule I Status Is Unconstitutional and Racist

An 11-year-old girl who suffers from epileptic seizures, former New York Jets player Marvin Washington and an Iraq war veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder are among five plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed this week against the federal government.

The lawsuit seeks the de-classification of marijuana as a dangerous drug and challenges the constitutionality of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).

The 89-page complaint, filed in the New York district court, claims that the federal government does not now, nor could ever possibly have believed that cannabis met or meets the DEA’s Schedule I requirements: “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.”

Read more at High Times

Fears of Pot Crackdown Stoked After Feds Hold ‘Secret Meeting’ in Colorado

Fears of a federal Justice Department-led crackdown on America’s burgeoning legal marijuana industry—based entirely on anti-cannabis statements, recent and age-old, made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and other Trump administration figures—have so far been unfounded.

So far, Sessions has been unable to convince Congress to give him license to go after legal marijuana—and so far, federal drug cops have yet to enlist a willing accomplice in local government or law enforcement in a legal state. Without help from local cops on the ground, a crackdown won’t go very far.

But the feds may have found some collaborators in Colorado Springs. 

Read more at High Times

Radical Rant: Dope, the Insidious Decay that Infects and Rots Our Nation from Within!

“Ladies and gentlemen, there is no War on Drugs. There never has been.”

I know that must be news to those of you who had body-armored SWAT teams breaking down your door and forcing you to the floor in handcuffs while they loot your home over the “anonymous tip” that you might have been cultivating some houseplants in the garage.

However, it was for your own good and the good of the nation.

Read more at High Times

Government Pot Is Still Horrible—And You Can Blame This DEA Trick

Last August, the DEA managed a remarkable two-fer: in one fell swoop, the nation’s loyal federal drug police quashed while delivering new hope.

Judging by what’s happened since, the nation’s loyal drug police may also have played us all for fools, all while maintaining the mendacious game of circular logic that’s keeping marijuana federally illegal.

On August 12, 2016, the DEA formally rejected a petition that would have seen marijuana reclassified from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act, the official government list of the world’s most dangerous drugs. The reason, acting DEA chief Chuck Rosenberg said at the time, was a lack of scientific evidence demonstrating marijuana had any medical value.

Read more at High Times

DEA Reaffirms Stance That CBD Meets Schedule I Criteria — Reality Says Otherwise

The US Drug Enforcement Administration has publicly reiterated its position that cannabidiol, a non-psychotropic cannabinoid, is properly categorized under federal law as a schedule I controlled substance — meaning that, by definition, it possesses “a high potential for abuse,” “no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States,” and lacks “accepted safety … under medical supervision.”

The agency has long contended that CBD, along with all organic cannabinoids, is — by default — a schedule I controlled substance because it is a naturally occurring component of the cannabis plant. (This position is similarly held by both the NIDA and the FDA.) Nonetheless, a growing body of science undermines the notion that CBD meets any of the criteria necessary for such classification.

Specifically, clinical trial data finds that CBD consumption is “safe,” “non-toxic,” and “well tolerated” in human volunteers. Even the director of the US National Institute on Drug Abuse acknowledges that CBD is “not mind-altering” and that it “appears to be a safe drug with no addictive effects.”

Read more at NORML

DEA Going to the Mat in Federal Courts Over Legality of CBD

Remember just before Christmas, when the DEA quietly adopted a “Final Rule” criminalizing “marihuana extract,” presumably including all extracts from the cannabis plant?

Then, the agency went on to “clarify” that the Final Rule was based on the DEA’s own interpretation that weed extracts derived from mature cannabis or industrial hemp stalks were not illegal under the federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and, furthermore, the ruling was meant to give priority to researchers.

Confusion and panic reigned across the land, especially from the burgeoning hemp industry, which has been developing countless innovative products, including plastics, and has seen the rise of an agricultural sector that could save the American farm.

Read more at High Times