CannaMinutes – News for the Cannabis Culture: Feb 2018

CannaMinutes – News for the Cannabis Culture: Feb 2018 (Who’s Obstructing Legal weed?)

Although well over half of the States in America have some sort of legal cannabis laws and the support of legal cannabis has reached an all time high among American citizens there is still a lot of resistance to the cause. Let’s look at the some of the entities obstructing legalizing recreational cannabis use on a federal level in the United States.

Big Pharma
A 2017 Esquire article referred to Big Pharma as the biggest obstacle to legalized recreational cannabis in America. The article outlines the donation of $500,000 by Insys Therapeutics to the opponents of the recent attempt at a recreational law in Arizona. It was the single largest donation to an Anti Cannabis initiative to that date and Arizona voters rejected the Recreational law and have instead adopted a medical only law. This is only one of example of many instances of Big Pharma lobbying against legalized cannabis out of concern that many of their opioid based medications profits could take a considerable hit.

Although it has skeptics, a 2017 study in Colorado showed that opioid overdose deaths fell after legalizing cannabis. One would presume that overall use of opioids would also fall off if alternate less addictive and harmful pain medications grew on trees.

Alcohol
Another entity that stands to lose a tremendous amount of money with legal cannabis is the alcohol industry. According to Forbes, those loses could equal up to over $2 Billion as determined by the Cannabiz Consumer Group. And just this month the Molson Coors Brewing company reported in their 10-K earnings report that legal cannabis is a “potential risk” to it’s business. And with some state initiatives, such as California’s new recreational cannabis law, forbidding the sale of cannabis infused alcoholic beverages across the board, it’s unlikely that brewers of alcohol will be able to get a piece that market. And the trend is for adults to use less alcohol and more cannabis in states where it has become legal although alcohol sales have still increased in Colorado since legalizing cannabis.

Private Prisons
Private prisons are also one of the several law enforcement entities fighting against legalized cannabis. According to Leafly “The Corrections Corporation of America, one of America’s largest for-profit prison companies, revealed that continuing the drug war is a central pillar of their business strategy.” Prison Guard and Police Unions are also among this law enforcement group rallying to stop the progress of legalized cannabis. And it’s really no surprise that law enforcement entities would oppose legal cannabis when the nation’s top cop is one the biggest obstacles of them all.

Jeffrey B. Sessions
That enormous obstacle of course is United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “Good people don’t smoke cannabis” is just one of his irrational quotes about cannabis. He once even stated, while referring to the Ku-Klux-Klan that “I thought those guys were okay until I learned they smoked pot.“ He insists that legalizing cannabis is a threat to national security and constantly ignores data showing that cannabis use can help ease the opioid addiction by lowering deaths in legal states as well as an off-ramp drug for people with seriously dangerous addictions.

It’s unreasonable to believe that someone who served as a General, a US Senator and holds the highest law enforcement office in America is a complete idiot, so there must be some other reason to deny logic and hold such a firm stance against cannabis and state’s rights. It leads one to believe that perhaps the man is but a puppet with the strings being pulled from some entity from beyond the voice of reason… corporate profits.

Sources:

https://www.esquire.com/lifestyle/health/a54160/big-pharma-against-legal-weed/

https://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/legalized-marijuana-could-help-curb-opioid-epidemic-study-finds-n739301

https://www.forbes.com/sites/debraborchardt/2017/03/13/beer-industry-could-lose-2-billion-from-legal-marijuana/#1bb818c128c1

https://www.leafly.com/news/politics/the-top-5-industries-lobbying-against-cannabis-legalization-will

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2018/01/05/why-jeff-sessions-marijuana-crackdown-is-going-to-make-legalization-more-likely/?utm_term=.cd4c3b3d3e30

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