These are confusing times for youth when it comes to the messages they hear about Marijuana. A schedule 1 drug, that's medicine, that's federally illegal, legal in Washington, but not legally sold here in Lakewood. I'm even confused. There are a ton of places youth hear messages about this illegal drug. Whether it's from their friends, parents, police, researchers, school administrators, cannabis shops, or a local black market dealer. Many youth are still confused,
"Is Marijuana legal?"
"Is Marijuana safe?"
The debate about medicinal Marijuana has strong opinions on both sides. In a recent article by USA Today it was reported that the DEA denied a petition to reschedule Marijuana. It remains in the same category as LSD and heroin. Based on recommendations from the Food & Drug Administration and a lack of conclusive research the DEA has denied a petition to reschedule Marijuana as safe for medicinal use.
According to this letter from acting DEA Administrator here's why:
1) Marijuana has a high potential for abuse.
2) Marijuana has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
3) Marijuana lacks accepted safety for use under medical supervision.
So, what does that mean for us in Washington state?
The law (I-502) still says...
- Only adults age 21 and older can purchase and possess marijuana.
- Adults age 21 and over can purchase up to one ounce of useable marijuana (the harvested flowers, or “bud”), 16 ounces of marijuana-infused edibles in solid form, 72 ounces in liquid form, and 7 grams of marijuana concentrates.
- Buying and Selling – Marijuana can only be sold and purchased at state-licensed retail stores.
- No Resale or Giveaways – It remains a felony for anyone who is not a licensed retailer to sell or provide marijuana to anyone else. Providing or selling marijuana to a minor under the age of 18 can result in up to 10 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
- Public Use – It is illegal to consume marijuana in view of the public.
- Driving – It is illegal to drive under the influence of marijuana if you have more than 5 nanograms of active THC per milliliter of blood. Doing so may result in significant legal penalties.
All sides of this debate can agree that we want what's best for the kids of our neighborhoods. They are our future. How could we work together to give clear messages to kids that Marijuana will negatively affect their future, their independence, and their dreams? Let's dream about seeing all kids go to school, graduate, do something special with their lives, & aspire to be in control of their future!