It is no surprise that this current administration plans on continuing to put more restrictions on marijuana. Even among the overwhelming evidence that marijuana is actually good for the country, there continue to be push backs. This problem has only elevated since the appointment of Jeff Sessions as Attorney General. It has been no secret that Sessions has wanted to continue the endless war on drugs, but he isn’t alone.
Most recently Rep. Andy Harris has joined the endless crusade against the marijuana industry. This is nothing new for Harris as he has always been vocal against medical marijuana. In fact, rollingstone.com regards Harris as being marijuana’s “biggest foe”.
Recently Harris has been pushing for more marijuana research.
This leads many supporters of the marijuana community to wonder why. This comes on the heels of the announcement that Jeff Sessions wants to revive the D.A.R.E program.
The D.A.R.E program was one that started decades ago as was aimed at America’s youth in hopes to keep them off drugs. One of the biggest platforms of this program was that marijuana was the worst drug by far. They believed marijuana to be the main gateway drugs for kids. This meant that using marijuana can lead to harsher drugs like opioids. This is a myth that has since been debunked.
An important thing to remember is that the legalization of medical marijuana did not come without research. There have been decades of tests and studies done to show the benefits and risks of marijuana. So, why the sudden need for new research?
People think that Harris is pushing for more research in hopes of slowing down the marijuana industry. With 8 states now offering recreational use of marijuana, the industry shows no signs of stopping. Is this new research proposal the break that anti-marijuana lawmakers need?
Harris believes that the research that was previously done to prove marijuana’s benefits have been done incorrectly. He was even quoted as saying “The research is bad”. He believes that there is little to no proof that links cannabis to medical benefits. Harris is hoping to find evidence that there is no connection between marijuana and debilitating conditions.
If this testing is not done correctly this could bring serious complications for patients. Harris is specifically targeting treatments for things like HIV and Epilepsy. The bill to get this research even wants more studies done on cancer patients.
So, what does this mean for patients who use medical marijuana? The main goal of Harris and his supporters is to declassify marijuana as “medicine”. They are hoping to prove that there are not as many medical benefits as people claim. If they are successful, this could mean war for the medical marijuana community.
This could not only prevent people from getting the care they need but could also keep people from getting their MMJ card. This could lead to even more restrictions and hoops for potential patients to jump through.
The pro-marijuana lawmakers are not concerned, however. There is so much evidence showing the benefits of marijuana. People are confident that new research will only strengthen the fight for decriminalization of marijuana. Having big movers on the side of decriminalization is important for this research. This is because they will make sure that any studies will be done properly and lawfully.
As far as the marijuana community is concerned, this is not a setback. Instead, it is just another baseless attack on the marijuana industry. What does this mean for the future of cannabis? Only time will tell.