Some say this herbal remedy eases pain, but 4 southwest Illinois cities have banned it

Kratom Powder

Some people swear by kratom as an herbal remedy, and it’s legal for use by adults in Illinois.

But a state representative has tried to ban it, and three metro-east cities and a village have prohibited its possession, use and sale due to safety concerns. Most recently, Edwardsville City Council passed an ordinance in March on the recommendation of Police Chief Jay Keeven.

“We were presented with quite a bit of health-related data, and members of the community spoke out against it because of its potentially harmful side effects,” Ward 1 Alderman S.J. Morrison said last week. “There’s just not a lot known about it.”

People who violate the ordinance are subject to a $750 fine. Kratom already had been prohibited in Jerseyville, Alton and Glen Carbon.

Continue at MSN

Pennsylvania Gov. Wolf, Lt. Gov. Fetterman Again Urge Lawmakers To Legalize Recreational Marijuana

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf and Lt. Gov. John Fetterman are once again urging lawmakers to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has caused enormous disruptions to the economy and with the additional federal aid stagnating in Congress, we need to do everything we can right here in Harrisburg right now to help ourselves to recover from this pandemic,” Wolf said.

“Legalizing cannabis is serious policy for serious times. I put this challenge out against to the legislature,” Fetterman said. “We’re talking about generating billions in long-term revenue for Pennsylvania, we’re talking about generating tens of thousands of jobs.”

Pennsylvania’s Republican-led Assembly has previously opposed the legalization. They said a bill would need to work its way through the Senate Committee Process to be vetted.

Read more at CBS

Why Investing in Psychedelic Medicine Could Be Better Than Cannabis

The burgeoning psychedelic sector is attracting attention from investors as more companies have gone public, and research has increased rapidly due to greater mainstream and government acceptance and decriminalization.

Decades of research have demonstrated that psychedelics, which are hallucinogenic drugs, are effective in treating mental disorders such as depression, suicidal thoughts, PTSD and anxiety. The Food and Drug Administration has approved and fast-tracked several clinical research trials.

Dozens of biopharmaceutical companies are competing against each other since the ones that develop the intellectual property to synthesize the molecules to help treat disorders will likely be profitable and attract more capital.

“There is a smaller subset of investing verticals in the psychedelic space as it is more of an intellectual property race to develop drugs,” says Michael Sobeck, managing partner at Ambria Capital, a San Juan, Puerto Rico-based asset manager.

Read more about the key issues here

Some veterans hope Oregon will legalize psychedelic mushrooms for therapeutic use

While vaping has falling out of favor, mushrooms are headed in the other direction in Oregon.

The state may be just a few months away from legalizing psychedelic mushrooms for therapeutic reasons, if Measure 109 passes in the November election.

Psilocybin, the psychoactive ingredient in some mushrooms, has been outlawed in the United States since 1968. But over the years, studies show the drug may have lasting benefits for mental health patients.

“I’ve just seen these incredible changes occur in people who come into a room closed-off, angry, suspicious, and just really hurting and then after one session of psilocybin therapy, come out the other side smiling,” said Chad Kuske, a former Navy Seal who’s been undergoing psilocybin therapy to cope with post traumatic stress disorder.

Four veterans groups are endorsing the measure.

Keep reading at MSN

House committee passes two resolutions authored by Struzzi

State Rep. Jim Struzzi, R-Indiana, announced Wednesday that the House Health Committee has passed two resolutions he authored. House Resolution 459 would request guidelines for the commercial sale of CBD products from the Food and Drug Administration. House Resolution 460 would request guidance and appropriate protocol from the FDA for the safe use of Kratom.

“The affects of these products are still relatively unknown. Without oversight from the FDA, there is a lack of consistency in the market. This leads to retailers not being fully knowledgeable about the products they sell, and consumers not being fully knowledgeable about the products they purchase,” Struzzi said in a news release. “My resolutions would go a long way in providing clear guidelines for the sale and use of these products so retailers and consumers know they are being safe and responsible.”

Read more here

Where Do Biden and Trump Stand on Cannabis Legalization?

These days, it is pretty clear that Americans are finally ready to end federal cannabis prohibition. Eleven states and Washington, D.C., have already legalized the plant for recreational use, and more than half of the country lives in a state with some form of medical marijuana law on the books. In the latest national opinion polls released by both Pew and Gallup, more than two-thirds of Americans said they were ready to see cannabis legalized across the country. In Congress, a bill to fully legalize weed has more than 70 co-sponsors and could see a full House vote before the year is up.

But with the 2020 presidential election just months away, the future of marijuana legalization will likely rest on the shoulders of whoever is sitting in the Oval Office come January. So how do Donald Trump and Joe Biden feel about legalizing weed?

Find out at Complex

Congress set to vote on legalization of Marijuana in September

The House is preparing to vote on the legalization of marijuana next month — a bipartisan bill whose lead sponsor in the Senate is Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris.

Under the MORE act, cannabis would be removed from the 1970 federal Controlled Substances Act.

House members were alerted to the possibility of an upcoming vote via an email from from Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, writes Politico.

Cannabis is currently a Schedule 1 substance, just like heroin, ecstasy and LSD.

Removing marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act would decriminalize it at the federal level.

The act, which stands for Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, would also encourage the expunging of most cannabis convictions on the state level.

More at New York Post

Wall Street donors are racing to back psychedelic therapy

Psychedelics are the next billion dollar industry, according to market analysts, and investors and donors are taking note.

Over the past six months, $30 million in donations has gone to the nonprofit funding research into MDMA-assisted therapy, the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), according to the group’s announcement on Aug. 20. Major donors, who each donated at least $1 million, include GoDaddy founder Bob Parsons, hedge fund billionaire Steven Cohen, and Joby Pritzker, co-founder of Tao Capital Management and part of the family behind Hyatt Hotels.

MDMA isn’t the only psychedelic gaining support. Earlier this month, the Canadian government ruled that four citizens could legally use psilocybin (the psychedelic compound in magic mushrooms), to treat end-of-life anxiety. Meanwhile, clinical studies on psilocybin are racing towards the final stages of trials at a similar pace to MDMA, and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just approved its second ketamine-based treatment for depression.

Read more at MSN

Editorial: Pot tax revenues can bring pandemic relief

In 2018, San Rafael voters endorsed Measure G, a city-sponsored plan to set new and higher taxes for the fledgling legal marijuana market.

It was a step in the city’s “toe in the water” approach toward opening the door to the 2016 approval of California’s recreational pot initiative. In San Rafael, 69% of its voters endorsed Proposition 64.

The city had estimated local marijuana production and sales — delivery only — could generate about $1 million per year for the city’s general fund.

That estimate fell far short of reality, as the special tax raised only $243,554 in its first calendar year.

That was almost two years ago.

This past year was a lot different. Local pot delivery sales have been on a record-setting pace.

What a difference a pandemic can make.

Keep reading…

Thailand’s Lawmakers Edge Closer to Legalizing Kratom

Thailand’s lawmakers have taken one step closer to legalizing Kratom with proposed legislation that would remove kratom from the narcotics list, the Office of the Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) said on Tuesday.

The Council of State, the government’s legal arm, finished examining the amendment to the Narcotics Act last Wednesday. It will send back to the cabinet for endorsement before it is forwarded to parliament, ONCB secretary-general, Niyom Termsrisuk, said.

The cabinet approved in principle to remove kratom from the drugs list in March.

Mr Niyom warned the public that the plant is still on the narcotics list at present. Which means possessing and using it is still illegal. The warning came in response to a recent surge in drug cases involving kratom.

Read more at CTN News

Kratom Legality In The US – Everything You Need To Know

Kratom, scientifically known as Mitragyna speciosa is a healing plant that grows in Southeast Asia as well as other parts of Africa. This plant has grown immense popularity in the last few decades. This is because it is being touted as a natural healing plant that comes with a lot of health benefits for one and all.

Traditionally, the use of this plant was restricted to chewing its leaves by the farmers while working. This was mainly done to obtain a boost of energy. Over time, the use of kratom became popular for many other purposes as well. This plant is believed to be having compounds that help you to alleviate your chronic pain as well as pain caused because of chemotherapy. Furthermore, this plant also provides many benefits for different problems and ailments such as stress, anxiety, insomnia, diabetes, arthritis, joint pain, or any other kind of chronic pain suffered by a person.

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Cannabis Legalization Officially Added To Arizona Ballot

Arizona voters will have a chance this year to make their state the latest to end pot prohibition.

A petition spearheaded by a pro-legalization group had its signatures officially certified by Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs on Monday, clearing the way for the proposal to qualify for the state’s ballot this November.

Hobbs, a Democrat, said on Twitter that the “the petition exceeded the minimum requirement with approximately 255,080 valid signatures,” and that the measure will appear on the ballot as Prop. 207.

The petition was circulated by Smart and Safe Arizona, a group that has centered its pitch for legalization around economic opportunity for the state, saying that a marijuana industry would create jobs and opportunities, with revenue providing “additional resources for police training, enforcement and task forces,” as well as more funding for the state’s community colleges. The group said it had submitted more than 420,000 signatures.

Keep reading

Petition to legalize natural psychedelic drugs in Canada signed 13,000 times

A petition that will go before the House of Commons and calls for the legalization of natural psychoactive drugs has gained over 13,000 signatures.

After it was posted on Apr.18, Trevor Millar, Chair of Board for the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, says the petition gained a whopping 500 signatures in a mere 12 hours.

So far, Ontario has the lion’s share of signatures, with 4,746. B.C. follows in second with 3,698 and Alberta comes third with 1,918.

MP Paul Manly of the Nanaimo—Ladysmith Green Party Caucus is sponsoring the petition, which will close for signatures on Aug. 14. As such, Millar tells Vancouver Is Awesome in a phone call that he hopes people will take time to understand what the petition is about.

“It is only about legalizing natural substances right now,” says Millar. “Things that grow from the ground.”

Read more at Tricity News

Cannabiz: Study finds lower crime rates after legalization, more

Opponents of legalizing adult-use marijuana have long held that legalization would lead to higher crime rates in and around the areas where pot shops were commonplace. While various studies have fallen on either end of this argument for years, a new study of crime data in areas within and surrounding Washington and Colorado suggests legalization may not lead to higher crime after all, though the study is limited. Washington and Colorado were chosen for the study as they were the first two states to legalize marijuana, in 2012.

The study, conducted by Guangzhen Wu of the University of Utah, Francis D. Boateng of the University of Mississippi and Thomas Roney, an economic consultant, was published in the Journal of Drug Issues in late May, and has since gained national attention…

Read more at the Colorado Springs Indy

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.

Keep reading here

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.

Read more here…

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.

Read more here

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.