Legalizing marijuana, once a pipe dream on Capitol Hill, takes an important step forward

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In early December, the House of Representatives passed the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, or  the MORE Act . The bill sought to decriminalize marijuana nationally by removing cannabis from the federal government’s  Schedule I controlled substance list . That category indicates the drug has a high potential for abuse and no therapeutic value. It also includes drugs like methamphetamine and heroin. Jailed weed dealer relinquishes almost $2 million in Bitcoin — over $150 million still remains locked away behind a secret lost code Record-breaking snowstorm not enough to stop woman from driving high Man catches police’s eye after dropping cardboard box containing half a million dollars of weed The bill is a long way from the passage. With a new Congress just seated, it would need to be reintroduced and pass again in the House. Even if that happens, it is unlikely to get through the Senate. Still, the initial success of the MORE Act is an important sign that sentiment in Washington is changing, guided by increasing public backing for cannabis reform.  Two-thirds of Americans  now support legalizing the drug. As a  health policy professor  and president of the  International Society for the Study of Drug Policy , I have followed the growing acceptance of cannabis policy reform for several decades and see both strengths and weaknesses of the most recent proposal. Correcting Past Wrongs Fifteen states and Washington, D.C. — places where 33 per cent of the U.S. population lives — have legalized recreational marijuana . An additional 21 states have legal medical marijuana markets. Disparities between federal and state marijuana laws in these various jurisdictions have — at a minimum — generated market hurdles and have done far more damage than that in some communities. Forty percent of  U.S. drug arrests in 2018  were for…

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Source : Legalizing marijuana, once a pipe dream on Capitol Hill, takes an important step forward

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