DEA Legalizes Cocaine Derivative While Pushing Back Against Critics Who Say Marijuana Should Receive Similar Treatment

DEA Legalizes Cocaine Derivative While Pushing Back Against Critics Who Say Marijuana Should Receive Similar Treatment
MJ moment

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is moving forward with a plan to legalize a cocaine derivative. And even as the agency participates in a review of marijuana’s scheduling status directed by the president, it is dismissing public comments arguing that cannabis should be removed from federal control alongside the cocaine-derived substance it is now rescheduling. DEA first proposed descheduling the compound, [18 F]FP-CIT, last year and opened a public comment period for people to weigh in. Advocates picked up on the action, seeking similar treatment of marijuana given the plant’s established medical value. In a Federal Register filing on Monday, DEA didn’t put much stock in public feedback comparing the cocaine-derived substance’s treatment to that of cannabis. “One commenter opposed decontrol of [18F]FP-CIT, suggesting rescheduling cocaine, or any cocaine derivative, is a safety concern and such rescheduling would wrongly signal that cocaine is less harmful than cannabis,” DEA said. “DEA does not agree with the commenter’s concern about harm. [18F]FP-CIT is derived from cocaine, a schedule II substance, via ecgonine, a schedule II substance.” The agency didn’t explicitly address marijuana scheduling any further in the new notice, despite having received numerous petitions seeking the full removal cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) or simple rescheduling on the basis that it has medical value and low abuse potential over several decades. Those petitions have been summarily denied over the years. That said, President Joe Biden issued a mass marijuana pardon last month, while at the same time directing federal agencies to carry out a scientific review into cannabis scheduling that could return with a recommendation to place it in a lower classification or remove it from control altogether. The Justice Department has said that it would move expeditiously to complete that review, and advocates are hopeful that the president’s influence…

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Source : DEA Legalizes Cocaine Derivative While Pushing Back Against Critics Who Say Marijuana Should Receive Similar Treatment

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