This year, April 20 is different. Marijuana lovers have long celebrated 4/20but now that companies are seeing a potential for profit, they also involve, with credits like $ 4.20 Lyft and Carl Jr. burgers infused with CBD. Marijuana is a big deal, although it is not legal everywhere yet. So, what is the current state of marijuana legalization?
In summary, things look promising. From the point of view of public opinion, the legalization of marijuana has become very popular. As VoxGerman Lopez noted, three major national polls show how much support is growing rapidly. All three show that over 60% of Americans support legalization. According to Gallup, for example, 66 percent Americans have supported legalization in 2018, against 60 percent just two years ago.
The trend continues with regard to state-level legislation. The 2016 election was a tipping point for the legalization of marijuanaand three states voted for in the mid-term elections of 2018, including Michigan, the first Midwestern state to do so. In total, 10 states and Washington have legalized marijuana, and others have decriminalized the drug. States like Ohio and Arizona are likely to have voting initiatives pushing for legalization soon.
"The political wind is certainly in favor of legalizing marijuana now," says Steve Hawkins, executive director of the Draft policy on marijuana. "If we currently have 10 states that have legalized marijuana, we could easily see 10 more by the end of 2020.
The Hawkins Group believes that once marijuana is legal in 25 states, it will "create this tipping point" to allow Congress to end the federal prohibition. "It would be a mistake to think that Congress will act because of the lobbying efforts of the federal government," said Hawkins. "Legislators need to hear from their constituents, and change will happen when the state's lobbying lobby forces act."
That said, federal reform of marijuana laws has become a key topic for the 2020 presidency. Democratic candidates. Meaning. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) all spoke in favor of loosening laws on marijuana.
Justin Strekal, Political Director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), points out that the previous Congress had introduced 63 draft laws on the prohibition of cannabis. "This number is higher than every previous session of the Congress," he said. The bills addressed everything from the end of the criminalization policy to the provision of resources to clear criminal records in order to restrict legislation that would allow Veterans Affairs Canada conducts research trials.
Part of the legislation under consideration now includes the End of the Federal Law on the Prohibition of Marijuana, which would officially remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act and allow states to regulate. (The Drug Enforcement Administration currently lists marijuana as a Schedule I drugwhich means that it is considered more dangerous than cocaine and methamphetamine). There is also the SAFE Banking Law, which would financial institutions to work with cannabis producing companies without fear of being sanctioned by the federal government, and the RESPECT Resolution, which encourages states to adopt some of the best practices to reduce racial disparities in the marijuana industry and help repair the effects of war on drugs. Even though black and white Americans consume marijuana at similar rates, blacks are nearly four times more likely to be arrested for possession of marijuana, according to a 2013 report. This general pattern holds even after legalization.
For Strekal, there are still many questions about how legalization might unfold. For example, will federal policy reform end the criminalization of marijuana or limit the application of the federal Controlled Substances Act? Will a comprehensive federal bill include aspects of restorative justice for those affected by criminalization? Do you include resources for underground economy players to work in the legal marijuana market? "We've moved the conversation from an" if "to a" how "," says Strekal. "And how?"