The DEA Is Getting Dragged ‘Kicking and Screaming’ Into the New World of Marijuana


A man waves a Colorado flag with a marijuana leaf on it at Denver's annual 4/20 marijuana rally in front of the state capitol building in downtown Denver, April 20, 2015. (photo: Rick Wilking/Reuters)
A man waves a Colorado flag with a marijuana leaf on it at Denver’s annual 4/20 marijuana rally in front of the state capitol building in downtown Denver, April 20, 2015. (photo: Rick Wilking/Reuters)

 

Christopher Woody | International Business Times | Reader Supported News | May 18, 2016

n April, the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) said it would review marijuana’s classification as a Schedule I drug, considered the “most dangerous class” of substances.

While the DEA’s announcement is a positive sign, many drug policy experts think it’s unlikely the agency will actually decide to change marijuana’s classification, despite a dramatic shift in public sentiment about the drug.

Marijuana’s position in the top tier of the scheduling system — which organizes drugs by their “acceptable medical use and … abuse or dependency potential” — has endured since the 1970s.

“DEA will carry out its assessment of the FDA recommendation in accordance with the [Controlled Substances Act] … and hopes to release its determination in the first half of 2016,” the DEA said in a letter to a group of Democratic senators, first obtained by the Huffington Post.

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Hillary Clinton Calls For Rescheduling Cannabis


NORML | November 12, 2015

Orangeburg, SC: Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton called for amending the federal classification of cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule II during a campaign stop this weekend.

Fellow Democrat presidential candidate Martin O’Malley had previously said that, if elected, he would move cannabis to Schedule II via executive order. Republican candidate Rand Paul (KY) is the co-sponsor of Senate legislation to reclassify the substance. Last week, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders introduced legislation, “The Ending Federal Prohibition Act of 2015,” to remove marijuana from the US Controlled Substances Act altogether.

In her remarks, Clinton alleged that scientists “haven’t done any research” on the safety and potential therapeutic efficacy. However, a keyword search on National Library of Medicine database yields thousands of scientific papers specific to cannabis and its effects. The findings of a recent review of FDA-approved clinical trials assessing the safety and therapeutic efficacy of herbal cannabis in various patient populations reported, “Based on evidence currently available the Schedule I classification is not tenable; it is not accurate that cannabis has no medical value, or that information on safety is lacking.”

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