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Virginia Governor Calls Marijuana Prohibition “A Racist System”
In his State of the Commonwealth Address, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam delivered a scathing rebuke to the prohibition of marijuana, noting its disproportionate impact on people of color.
Northam also compared the profitability of cannabis to another prized Virginia drug crop.
The governor also touted the benefits the state would reap from legalized marijuana.
Medical Marijuana Drops Daily Opioid Use by Over 75%
The Journal Pain Medicine reports that the administration of medical marijuana caused a “78 percent reduction in mean [daily] opioid dosage” among 1,145 patients in a study from 21 Canadian medical clinics.
The study, funded by Canadian cannabis company Tilray, found patients stopped using many drugs altogether. After six months, use of non-opioid prescription drugs had dropped 64%, opioids dropped 60%, benzodiazepines dropped 54%, antidepressants dropped 38%, and anti-seizure medication use dropped 34%.
According to Marijuana Moment, marijuana consumption among patients did not increase in a statistically significant way over the six months, the researchers pointed out.
Three of four quality of life measures—physical health, psychological wellbeing, and social relationships—also improved for medical cannabis using patients.
Indiana State Senator Files Bills to Legalize Marijuana
Two bills to legalize marijuana have been filed in the Hoosier State.
Indiana State Senator Karen Tallian was blunt when she spoke to WDRB-TV about her reasons for wanting to end adult marijuana prohibition.
Indiana law currently allows for the possession of hemp CBD products, defined as those with less than 0.3% THC. According to NORML, any amount of marijuana possession is a misdemeanor with a potential 180 days in jail and $1,000 fine, plus loss of driver’s license for six months to two years. Possession of 5 grams or more of concentrate or cultivating a plant weighing greater than 30 grams are both felonies with 6 months to two-and-a-half years’ prison time possible and up to a $10,000 fine.
Medical Marijuana Becomes Legal in Mexico Next Wednesday
Mexico News Daily reports that more than three years after Congress approved the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes, it will finally become legal on Wednesday.
President López Obrador on Tuesday published regulations for the production, research, and use of medicinal marijuana.
Published in the federal government’s official gazette, the new regulations authorize the government to oversee the production of marijuana for research and medicinal purposes.
The regulations allow pharmacies to supply cannabis-based medicines to authorized patients in possession of prescriptions.
In addition, the regulatory framework permits the importation to Mexico of seeds, cannabis derivatives to be used in medicinal products, and processed marijuana-based medications.
Push for More Marijuana Equity Licenses Falls Short in Illinois
Activists hoping to see the creation of 75 new marijuana retail licenses in the state of Illinois were crestfallen Wednesday as the lame duck session of the legislature adjourned in Springfield.
The Chicago Sun-Times reports that a bill approved by state senators on Wednesday’s last session day died in the state assembly.
The bill was an important step in the achieving legalization advocates’ stated goal of improving access to the marijuana industry to people whose communities have been most devastated by marijuana prohibition.
The sticking point, according to State Rep. La Shawn Ford, was whether existing medical marijuana dispensaries could relocate without losing their ability to sell to the adult use market, something pushed for by the industry that Ford opposes.