Is Cannabis on Its Way to Federal Legalization?
Marijuana and Legalization
Cannabis legalization has always been a touchy topic regardless of whether the debate was about the medical or recreational variant of the plant. Obviously, the biggest reason why there were so many people opposing legalization was the fact that the cannabis industry as a whole lacked scientific background.
Decades ago, all people knew about cannabis was its capability of producing the famous “high” sensation. However, thanks to countless researchers and studies, new light has been shed on what cannabis truly is.
In June 2018, Canada passed the Cannabis Act, and on October 17, it legalized recreational cannabis. It has been a long time coming, but the push towards the legalization of this type of cannabis began to emerge when the medical marijuana related bill was passed in Canada way back in 2002.
According to Forbes, medical cannabis is the gateway for a better public perception of the cannabis industry. Once a country allows it, there is a good chance that the recreational variant is soon to follow. It is a trend that could make its way into the US as well.
As the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) classifies cannabis as a Schedule I substance, this represents the main obstacle. Under this, cannabis is considered as having “high abuse potential, no medical use, and severe safety concerns.” In short, it is considered as harmful as heroin or LSD, whereas cocaine is regarded better than cannabis!
Aside from giving it a bad reputation in public, the classification also limits the amount of research done for cannabis, thereby limiting people's knowledge about the plant’s advantages. With more official scientific research, cannabis can legally ease into a better perception from the public.
How Can Hemp Help?
Hemp, or Cannabis Sativa, is a variant of the cannabis plant which has become fully legalized on the federal level. Not so long ago, its cultivation was illegal. However, after passing the 2018 Farm Bill, the US farmers are free to grow as much hemp as possible. Its uses are various (clothes, insulation, ropes, etc.), but it will mostly be used for medical cannabis production, as it promises the greatest revenues.
Hemp differs from other cannabis species because it has a low level of the psychoactive tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and it is rich in the beneficial cannabidiol (CBD) compound. When medical cannabis is introduced in a region, academic bodies can freely delve deeper into what CBD is capable of.
There are already various proven benefits of CBD. Research has shown that the compound carries antipsychotic effects, which help people ease through mental disorders such as depression, anxiety, and even help with ADD/ADHD.
Aside from these, the compound is also said to fight cancer and heart diseases. These are only but a few medical properties that we are aware of today. After legalization, we will be able to explore even more.
Canada’s approval of the Cannabis Act is a huge step forward for cannabis and the industry as a whole. Now that it has a G7 country backing it up, there’s no telling just how the other major economies will see cannabis. Germany and Italy are expected to follow suit in Europe. What we do know for sure is that the potential for global acceptance has been set in place.
In the US, the battle for federal legalization of cannabis is still underway, even for the medical variant. However, as more states broaden their minds regarding the matter, there is a possibility that every other state will begin taking steps towards legalization as well. Here are some of the major arguments from both sides. Take a good look, and take a stand!