Congressman Says Marijuana Is Only A Performance-Enhancing Drug For Hot Dog Eating Contests

MJ moment

A congressman on Wednesday blasted the suspension of U.S. runner Sha’Carri Richardson from the Olympics over a positive marijuana test and said cannabis is only a performance enhancing drug in the context of food eating competitions. Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) argued that it is hypocritical that athletes would be penalized for using marijuana when alcohol use is largely tolerated. And he said it’s time for Congress to fix the policy gap and catch up with the public by federally legalizing cannabis. The comments came at a House Judiciary Committee markup of a bill to eliminate the sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine. The legislation, which passed in a 36-5 vote, doesn’t deal specifically with marijuana. But Cohen took the opportunity to reflect on the consequences of cannabis prohibition and make a call for change. “Marijuana is not a performance-enhancing drug unless you’re entered in the Coney Island hot dog eating contest on Fourth of July,” he said. “To take [Richardson’s] right to appear and her dream away from her is absurd, and this Congress should see that we don’t have these problems in the future.”

Cohen said Congress should deschedule cannabis and “leave it up to the states.” A bill to accomplish that in the House has already been filed, and Senate leadership recently unveiled a draft of their own federal legalization bill. “If she got rip-roaring drunk on margaritas, Red Bull or whatever else you drink out there these days—lagers—she’d have been fine because it wouldn’t have shown up in her system. She still would have been allowed to run,” Cohen said. “But for marijuana, it could have been 20 days ago and just a puff or two, she’s gone.” “Let’s get real. The war on drugs is a total failure,” he said. “Nancy Reagan was…

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