On Thursday, August 11, the U.S. DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) formally announced a refusal to reclassify marijuana and have the happy plant removed from the ‘Schedule 1’ list.
Schedule I drugs are those that have the following characteristic according to the United States Drug Enforcement Agency:
- The drug or other substance has a high potential for abuse.
- The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical treatment use in the U.S.
- There is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or substance under medical supervision.
No prescriptions may be written for Schedule I substances, and they are not readily available for clinical use.
According to the DEA announcement the agency decided to refuse after consulting with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for a ‘scientific and medical evaluation’.
HHS concluded that marijuana has a high potential for abuse, has no accepted medical use in the United States, and lacks an acceptable level of safety for use even under medical supervision.
But things should be clear here. This decision has substantially less to do with health, and far more to do with wealth. Consider this:
– There is an ever growing amount of research, laboratory, and field testing that clearly demonstrate numerous health benefits directly associated with marijuana.
– Three of the top five anti-legalize lobbying groups are law enforcement related. All of which rely on the big money made in the ‘war on drugs‘. These include private prisons corporations that make millions of dollars incarcerating people convicted of drug crimes (those with marijuana offenses make up a large part of that population), prison guard unions (a natural extension of the private prisons corps), and police unions (motivated by the federal drug war grants that finance their department budgets).
– The DEA is THE law enforcement agency that stands to lose the most with a deescalation of the war on drugs, not only in terms of big time dollar amounts, but also in prestige and its existence itself.
Just a thought:
The marijuana issue is one that represents in a deceptively quiet way a larger movement occurring within society. Individuals and independent groups out of the mainstream are coalescing in ways that are finally effecting ‘change’ in a very real way. They’re doing it locally and statewide. Eventually the federal government will have to admit its own defeat and comply with the wishes of the several states – the list of which continues to grow in favor of legalization. If this can be done with the marijuana issue, imagine how it can be done with so many more.
There are slivers of light cracking through the thick and dark walls created by the central programmers.