Magic mushrooms should be made legal in the same way as cannabis so they can be used to treat depression, leading doctors say

Magic mushrooms should be rescheduled in Britain to treat depression, top doctors have said.

Leading experts have called for a change in the law to allow ‘shrooms’ to be used in a similar way as medicinal cannabis.

But they said recreational use would remain illegal, with Brits caught in possession of the Class A drug facing a jail-term of up to seven years.

Scientific studies have repeatedly shown psilocybin — the psychoactive chemical in magic mushrooms — has promise in boosting mental health, fighting off depression and helping PTSD sufferers.

Experts from Oxford, Manchester and King’s College London universities have called for magic mushrooms to be rescheduled.

Psilocybin is currently listed as a Schedule 1 substance, meaning it’s thought to have no medicinal value and therefore cannot be legally possessed or prescribed.

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Legalise magic mushrooms to treat depression, say leading doctors

Magic mushrooms should be legalised as a potential medical treatment for depression and mental ill health, say leading doctors in a major report on the emerging benefits of the drug.

The researchers, from King’s College, London, Oxford and Manchester universities, say psilocybin, the psychedelic compound in magic mushrooms, has been shown in early trials to be a promising treatment for mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder.

They propose a law change that would re-categorise it as a drug that could be legally used as a therapeutic treatment in medical trials in a similar way to the Government’s rescheduling of cannabis for medical use. Any recreational use of the class A drug would continue to be illegal.

Read more at the Telegraph.

Lawsuit Filed To Block Arizona Cannabis Legalization Initiative

Opponents of a voter initiative that would legalize the recreational use of cannabis in Arizona have filed a lawsuit seeking to block the measure. Supporters of the initiative, known as the Smart and Safe Arizona Act, submitted more than 420,000 signatures earlier this month, far more than the 238,000 needed to qualify the measure for the ballot in the November general election.

If passed, the measure would legalize cannabis for use by adults and create a legal framework to regulate and tax commercial marijuana production and sales. The office of the Arizona Secretary of State is currently verifying the signatures to ensure that enough registered voters have signed to have the initiative included on this fall’s ballot.

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Oregon Measure To Legalize Magic Mushrooms Qualifies For November Ballot

Oregon will vote to legalize the use of therapeutic psilocybin under medical professional supervision this year, after an initiative qualified for the November ballot. If approved, Oregon would become the first state to allow the use of psilocybin, the psychoactive ingredient found in psychedelic mushrooms.

The group behind the ballot question, Initiative Petition 34, collected 164,782 signatures from Oregon residents to put the Oregon Psilocybin Services Act on the ballot. 112,020 signatures was the official amount required to qualify.

“This careful, regulated approach can make a real difference in peoples’ lives and we’re looking forward to bringing this program to the state,” Sheri Eckert said in a statement. Eckert, along with her husband Tom, were chief petitioners on the measure and also founded the Oregon Psilocybin Society.

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Will Biden Be “Slow-Mo Joe” When It Comes to Pot Legalization? Not Really.

If you think the U.S. will soon legalize marijuana at the federal level, you’re not alone. Canopy Growth CEO and former Constellation Brands CFO David Klein expects that it will happen in 2022. I’ve speculated that marijuana could be legalized nationwide as early as next year.

But could presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden be putting the brakes on the pot legalization train? Some might think so after reviewing recommendations from a task force that the former vice president formed along with Sen. Bernie Sanders. However, there’s more to the story.

Slow-mo Joe?
The Biden-Sanders “unity task force” created a 110-page document chock-full of policy recommendations across a wide array of issues. Among the issues that the task force considered was marijuana legalization. Anyone hoping that the team would recommend full legalization of pot in the U.S. probably came away a little disappointed after reading the task force’s document.

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Illinois pulls in $52 million in first 6 months of marijuana legalization

The legalization of marijuana in Illinois brought in $52 million during the first six months of 2020, the governor’s office said Tuesday.

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker said the $52 million makes up the industry’s tax revenue for the first half of the year, and he promised to reinvest that money in local communities.

“Illinois has done more to put justice and equity at the forefront of this industry than any other state in the nation, and we’re ensuring that communities that have been hurt by the war on drugs have the opportunity to participate,” Pritzker said.

The sale and usage of marijuana in Illinois was legalized effective Jan. 1, though both remain heavily regulated.

Read more at Stl Today.

Biden-Sanders task force comes short of calling to legalize marijuana

The camps of presumed 2020 Democratic Party nominee Joe Biden and former rival Sen. Bernie Sanders have come together to hammer out joint policy recommendations to unite the moderate and progressive wings of the party — but marijuana was one issue they could not agree on.

Sanders vowed to legalize marijuana via executive order on his first day in office. Biden, however, has been reluctant to call for legalizing pot.

As a compromise, the “Unity Task Force” instead calls for rescheduling the drug and decriminalizing its use, legalizing it at the federal level only for medical use.

The difference is this: Decriminalization would only relax penalties for marijuana use and possession. Full legalization would open the doors for marijuana to be regulated and taxed on the federal level.

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Pennsylvania Lt. Governor Urges Cannabis Legalization To Address Budget Deficit

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman is urging state lawmakers to legalize the adult use of cannabis as a way to reduce the impact of a looming budget deficit. The state faces a budget shortfall of $3.2 billion, largely as a result of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the economy.

Fetterman took to Twitter last week, calling for the legalization of marijuana as a path to new tax revenue for the state and reform of the state’s penal system as a way to realize budget cost savings.

“I don’t know who needs to hear this jk I know who—but earnestly reforming our state prison system + legalization of marijuana could generate half of this COVID-19 deficit,” Fetterman tweeted on July 2. “It would, however, could have other unintended consequences like justice and personal freedom.”

Read more at High Times

New York looked poised to legalize marijuana in 2020. Then COVID struck. Here’s what is next

Count legal marijuana in New York among the victims of COVID-19, along with the hundreds of millions in tax dollars and thousands of jobs legalization might have generated.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on the last day of March that the state’s spring legislative session was “effectively over” after several state lawmakers tested positive for the coronavirus.

They came back in June to address COVID-related issues, but didn’t address other outstanding issues.

Among the unfinished items Cuomo said would have to wait until next year was the legalization of marijuana for adult recreational use. Of the eight other states that were poised to legalize pot this year, only three appeared on track for legal weed in 2020.

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Psychedelic mushroom legalization moves closer to appearing on Oregon ballot

A push to legalize the use of psychedelic mushrooms in therapeutic settings is one step closer to appearing on the Oregon ballot in November, The Oregonian reported.

The Oregon Psilocybin Therapy Initiative announced this week that it has received the necessary amount of signatures for the measure to appear on the ballot.

Election officials will now work to verify whether the 164,782 signatures collected are valid.

Psilocybin is currently listed as a Schedule 1 drug at the federal level, meaning the U.S. government has determined it has “a high potential for abuse” and “no currently accepted medical treatment use in the U.S.”

The Oregon campaign, known as Initiative Petition (IP) #34, would legalize the use of psychedelic mushrooms in controlled doses when administered by professionals in the state.

Read more at MSN.

Why We Might See a Wave of Cannabis Legalization in 2021

The coronavirus pandemic has slowed a number of states’ efforts to legalize recreational cannabis, at least in the near term. However, it could have the opposite effect in 2021.

In an article on Barrons.com, Barron’s report Connor Smith says as many as 16 states had initially planned to include cannabis legalization issues on their ballots for the fall 2020 election. COVID-19 may have slowed that down this year, but with many states facing budget shortfalls thanks to major shutdowns in the spring, the potential tax revenues from legal cannabis could make it a major focus in 2021.

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Workers collect cannabis legalization, tax hike initiative signatures outside Trump rally

Several workers employed by a company hired to collect signatures for ballot initiatives that seek to increase taxes, legalize recreational cannabis and permit the early release of prisoners convicted of non-violent offenses donned MAGA hats and worked the crowds at President Donald Trump’s campaign rally Tuesday in Phoenix.

The workers, employed by Phoenix-based Petition Partners, were spread about the crowd outside of the Dream City Church, where Trump spoke to about 3,000 young conservatives.

Petition Partners and the Arizona Education Association, supporters of the tax hike initiative, were not immediately available to comment about the petition gatherers working the rally.

One signature gatherer, Sabrina Johnson, showed her petitions for the Second Chances, Rehabilitation and Public Safety Act; the Smart and Safe Arizona Act; and the Invest in Education Act.

When asked about the education initiative, she said it was simply “to help teachers in Arizona.”

Keep reading at the Washington Examiner.

State legislators seek kratom meeting with FDA commissioner

In a letter to FDA’s commissioner, Dr. Stephen Hahn, lawmakers from four states suggested it would be a “fool’s game” for the agency to try to keep kratom from consumers.

Four lawmakers from Arizona, Georgia, Utah and Nevada who sponsored kratom legislation in their states have requested a meeting with the top official of FDA—an agency that has long raised concerns about the safety of the botanical from Southeast Asia.

Positions held by FDA related to kratom and another botanical ingredient—CBD—were adopted long before Dr. Stephen Hahn was appointed commissioner, the lawmakers wrote to Hahn in a June 8 letter.

Read more at Natural Products Insider.

CDC flooded with comments on marijuana and kratom as alternative painkillers ahead of deadline

Federal regulators looking into pain management options at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have received hundreds of comments related to medical marijuana and more than 1,000 about kratom.

The federal agency’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control is looking for input on “individual stakeholder’s values and preferences related to pain and pain management options,” it said in an e-mail last week.

“Through this opportunity, CDC is seeking stakeholders’ perspectives on and experiences with pain and pain management, including, but not limited to, the benefits and harms of opioid use,” it said. “CDC invites input specifically on topics focused on using or prescribing opioid pain medications, non-opioid medications, or non-pharmacological treatments (e.g., exercise therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy).”

Read more at MSN.

Is CBD Legal In Missouri?

What is CBD Oil?
CBD is shorthand for Cannabidiol, an extract from hemp (and sometimes marijuana) plants that boasts a variety of healing properties and has been rapidly popularized across the United States in recent years. It is a powerful anti-inflammatory and can be used for a variety of conditions and ailments, including epilepsy, anxiety, and chronic pain.

While CBD oil will usually have a minor trace of THC present, it will not produce the same psychoactive effects produced by marijuana extracts. Currently, only CBD extracted from hemp plants is permitted for cultivation and purchase by the federal government.

Is CBD Legal In Missouri? Find out at The Weed Blog…

“We’re criminalizing a generation,” says one of South Dakota’s marijuana-legalization leaders

Leaders of ballot measures to legalize marijuana for medical and recreational uses in South Dakota rolled out for reporters a list of 50 people endorsing their efforts Wednesday.

Brendan Johnson, a past U.S. attorney for South Dakota, is sponsor of Constitutional Amendment A. It would allow people who were at least age 21 to use South Dakota-grown marijuana, or to grow, transport or distribute it in South Dakota to people who are at least 21.

A 15 percent excise tax on sales would be levied to pay for regulation by the state Department of Revenue, with any excess revenue to be split between state aid to public schools and state government’s general fund. The Legislature could adjust the rate after November 3, 2024.

Marijuana remains illegal under federal law.

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Monroe County supervisors rescind ban on kratom

A countywide ban of the herbal product kratom put in place last spring was lifted Monday morning following a 3-2 vote by the Monroe County Board of Supervisors to rescind it.

A delegation of citizens, business owners and advocates of kratom made impassioned pleas for the supervisors to overturn the countywide ban on the controversial supplement for treating chronic pain.

Supervisors met for half an hour in executive session before going back into open session to take the vote. Supervisors Joseph Richardson, B.R. Richey and Rubel West voted in favor of rescinding the ban, while Fulton Ware and Hosea Bogan voted to keep it in force.

Representatives from the Crime and Addiction Task Force of the Lowndes County Foundation requested for the previous administration of supervisors to pass the ban last March, making it the seventh county in the region to approve a kratom ban.

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Meet the Vermont marijuana legalization advocate running for the office of ‘high bailiff’

The irony is not lost on Dave Silberman. The Vermont-based drug policy advocate and lawyer who has been working for years to reform the state’s marijuana laws is running for the office of … high bailiff.

No, really. In Vermont, each county elects a high bailiff whose singular responsibility is to arrest the sheriff if they engage in unlawful conduct. Silberman wants to occupy that position in Addison County — and he plans to use it as a platform to advance bold reforms, including legalizing all drugs.

The candidate recently spoke to Marijuana Moment about the need to have a person challenging the status quo — rather than someone in law enforcement, as is typically the case for high bailiffs — assume the role.

Read more at the Boston Globe

Get Ready for Pharmaceutical-Grade Magic Mushroom Pills

In 1955, a bank executive and a New York society photographer found themselves in a thatch-roofed adobe home in a remote village in the Mazateca mountains. Gordon Wasson, then a vice president at J.P. Morgan, had been learning about the use of mushrooms in different cultures, and tracked down a Mazatec healer, or curandera, named María Sabina. Sabina, about 60 at the time, had been taking hallucinogenic mushrooms since she was a young child . She led Wasson and the photographer, Allan Richardson, through a mushroom ceremony called the velada.

“We chewed and swallowed these acrid mushrooms, saw visions, and emerged from the experience awestruck,” Wasson wrote in a Life magazine article, “Seeking the Magic Mushroom.” “We had come from afar to attend a mushroom rite but had expected nothing so staggering as the virtuosity of the performing curanderas and the astonishing effects of the mushrooms.”

Read more at VICE

Cannabis Legalization Is Key To Economic Recovery, Much Like Ending Alcohol Prohibition Helped Us Out Of The Great Depression

Our nation is in the midst of the greatest crisis in generations, with the Covid-19 pandemic impacting Americans’ physical and emotional well-being, while plummeting the nation’s economy into the worst economic downturn in our lifetimes. As the country begins what is likely to be a slow climb out of economic morass, federal, state, and local governments will be looking for new sources of revenue to replenish dwindling budgets and provide jobs to millions of Americans who find themselves out of work.

The situation is reminiscent of what the country faced during the Great Depression nearly 100 years ago. At that time, one of the government’s solutions was to end its 13-year experiment with alcohol prohibition. Today, the very same factors that caused the government to pull the plug on alcohol prohibition should result in the final nail in the coffin of the country’s much longer standing but equally unjust policy of marijuana prohibition.

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