NORML Op-Ed: Republicans Are Increasingly Unwilling to Respect Voters’ Decisions on Cannabis

On Election Day, a majority of Ohio voters decided in favor of Issue 2 — a citizen-initiated ballot measure legalizing the possession, home cultivation and retail sale of marijuana. The election outcome was hardly a surprise. Nationwide, an estimated 70 percent of Americans — including majorities of Democrats, Republicans and independents — endorse legalization. Of the 24 states that have legalized […]

NORML Op-Ed: The Science Is Clear — Marijuana Is Safer Than Tobacco

Nearly twice as many Americans believe that smoking cigarettes is more hazardous to your health than smoking marijuana. They’re right. Numerous studies assessing the long-term health impacts of cannabis smoke exposure belie the myth that marijuana is associated with the same sort of well established, adverse respiratory hazards as tobacco. For example, federally funded research at the University of California, Los Angeles […]

Rescheduling Marijuana Is Not Enough

Ten months after the Biden administration requested the Department of Health and Human Services “to initiate the administrative process to review expeditiously how marijuana is scheduled under federal law,” Secretary Xavier Becerra confirmed that the agency has recommended cannabis be removed from its Schedule I classification and placed in a lower schedule. While the explicit details of […]

NORML Op-Ed: Workplace Drug Testing Rules Must Comport with Cannabis’ Evolving Legal Status

Voters and politicians are reshaping America’s marijuana laws for the better. The possession and use of cannabis is now legal for medical purposes in 38 states and legal for adult recreational use in 23 of those.  Unfortunately, antiquated and discriminatory drug testing policies often haven’t kept up with these changes. It’s reasonable for employers to expect sobriety on […]

NORML Op-Ed: Cannabis Must Be Removed from the Controlled Substances Act to Resolve State/Federal Conflicts

Since California legalized the use of cannabis for medical purposes in 1996, there has existed a growing chasm between state-level marijuana policies and federal law. Today, the majority of states and the District of Columbia authorize the state-licensed production and sale of cannabis to qualifying patients. Twenty-three of these states also regulate the possession and […]

NORML Op-Ed: Senate Must Act on Legislation Clarifying Cannabis Banking Rules for State-Licensed Businesses

Members of the U.S. Senate Committee of Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs must move swiftly to advance legislation normalizing relations between state-licensed cannabis businesses and financial institutions. The advancement of the SAFE Banking Act is crucial to the health and safety of the tens of millions of consumers who patronize state-legal cannabis markets. That is […]

NORML Op-Ed: Ending Cannabis Bigotry Is Long Overdue

Opponents of cannabis legalization frequently decry what they call ‘a rapid push‘ toward legalization in America. But to those of us who’ve spent decades fighting to end over a century of marijuana prohibition, these changes cannot come soon enough. The initial push for cannabis criminalization, which began in earnest more than a century ago, had […]

NORML Op-Ed: Concerns Surrounding Cannabis and Mental Health Must Be Placed in Context, Not Sensationalized

Some health professionals have recently expressed concerns that exposure to highly potent cannabis products may trigger psychotic-like symptoms in certain consumers, particularly young males. Such claims are hardly new. In fact, allegations that cannabis smoking caused ‘incurable insanity’ in certain users were widely promoted throughout the 1920s and 1930s — eventually influencing Congress to impose a blanket ban on the substance […]

NORML Op-Ed: States Should Require Insurers to Pay for Medical Cannabis

Should health insurance programs reimburse patients for their use of medical cannabis products? In a growing number of states, the courts are saying “yes.” In the most recent example, a Pennsylvania Appellate Court ruled that workers’ compensation plans must cover cannabis-related expenditures when an employee uses it to recover from a workplace-related injury. The court […]

NORML Op-Ed: In the Era of Legal Marijuana, The Kids Are Alright

“What about the children?” This was arguably the most frequently posed question by critics in the years prior to state-level marijuana legalization. Many legalization opponents presumed that legalizing cannabis for adults would lead to an increase in marijuana use among teens. But ten years following the first states’ decisions to legalize, data conclusively shows that […]

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