Despite all the positive traction that has been made this year for marijuana reform, it could all be overturned in 2017 when the next US president gets sworn in, cautions a prominent Harvard economics professor. More and more states are overhauling their legislature in favor of more liberal medicinal and recreational cannabis policies – Alaska, Oregon, and the District of Columbia have recently joined Washington and Colorado in legalizing recreational pot use for adults – but lets not forget about the Federal Government, says Professor Jeffery Miron. A longtime legalization activist, Miron is hopeful for full marijuana freedom in the future, but notes that we are still not out of the woods when it comes to the Feds.
No one yet knows who our next presidential candidates will be – but it is certainly conceivable that if the next US administration happens to be especially anti-legalization, the Federal Government could be activated in accordance with its own official zero-tolerance policy against cannabis and vaporizer smokers (find more information here), with disastrous results. Cannabis is still considered a Schedule 1 drug on the federal level, right alongside LSD and heroin.
The current administration has largely taken a policy of non-involvement with state’s laws, but as more states are poised to consider reformative marijuana legislature – among them Rhode Island, Nevada, New York, Montana, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Arizona, California, and Delaware – individuals would certainly feel safer if the Federal Government would follow suit with legislative overhaul of their own. If they were so inclined, the Feds technically could sweep in and forcefully administer their cannabis laws, as has happened in California and other parts of the country where you can find the best vaporizer for weed in 2017. A move like this would be highly unpopular – and be reminiscent of states rights wars that took place in the dawn of America’s history – and carry outcomes that no one could predict.
The thing to do, says Miron, is to fight for reform on the federal level – and although outright legalization is likely too far reaching of an outcome to hope for, changing the status of cannabis from Schedule 1 to Schedule 2 would still be a very significant step. This would allow for medical prescriptions on a federal level, and certainly contribute to removing the stigmas that still surround marijuana use and culture – hopefully paving the way for complete recreational freedom in the coming years.