The good thing about being a weed blog and not a legit news site is that we don’t have to pretend to be balanced. So we want to start off by extending a big middle finger to the Trump White House. In a press conference today, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer announced that Americans can expect to see federal marijuana enforcement in states where the plant has been legalized for recreational use. He noted that medical marijuana markets would not be affected.
If you’re reading this page, we probably don’t have to tell you about the recent poll showing that 71% of Americans believe that the federal government should not interfere where states have legalized marijuana use. Nor do we have to tell you that 59% of Americans support federal legalization of the plant. And, though some might be fooled, we don’t have to remind you that the links that Spicer attempted to draw between opiate use and cannabis use are completely specious.
We might have to tell you that 30,000 Americans died from opiate overdoses last year, but we definitely don’t have to remind you that zero Americans died from marijuana overdoses last year.
At this point, it’s impossible to say what the announcement would mean. The Administration may turn to legal measures to invalidate the state laws or may begin raiding farms and producers. Or, maybe, it’s all bluster and nothing will change at all.
We do know one thing: there just aren’t enough DEA agents to raid every dispensary in the United States and still do anything else at all. So even if raids come, they’re more likely to chill the cannabis investment climate than completely shut down the industry.
With 20% of Americans living in legal states, it’s difficult to argue that legalization has had a negative impact on the health and safety of those citizens.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) issued a statement today condemning the announced federal marijuana enforcement: “I am deeply disappointed by Sean Spicer’s statement. The national prohibition of cannabis has been a failure, and millions of voters across the country have demanded a more sensible approach. I’m looking forward to working with the leadership of our newly formed cannabis caucus to ensure that Oregonian’s wishes are protected and that we end the failed prohibition on marijuana.”