National Commission on Federal Marijuana Policy Proposed

SteveCohen
Rep. Steve Cohen

More and more states, in conflict with federal policy, are permitting the use of medical marijuana and decriminalizing its recreational use. In order to examine this unnecessary conflict as well as the current federal policy’s broad impacts, Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN) introduced legislation last week to create a National Commission on Federal Marijuana Policy.

“[I]t’s important that we understand the impact of current federal policy and address the conflict with those state laws that allow for medicinal or personal use of marijuana,” said Congressman Cohen.  “This conflict is only going to continue to grow…we must provide certainty to the millions of individuals and businesses that remain caught in a web of incompatible laws. “

Congressman Cohen is optimistic that a national commission would provide the government with the tools necessary to create sensible policy.

A similar commission was created in 1971. Released two years later, the “National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse,” which was led by former Pennsylvania Governor Raymond P. Shafer, called for the decriminalization of marijuana.

The Shafer Commission’s recommendations were disregarded and the War on Drugs nonsensically expanded. As a result, countless responsible marijuana users have been saddled with criminal records, nonviolent offenders have been crammed into our overcrowded prisons, and taxpayer dollars and law enforcement resources continue to be wasted in the attempt to impose failed marijuana policies.

The majority of Americans believe marijuana should be taxed and regulated like alcohol. Forty years of ignorance is enough; it’s time to re-evaluate federal policy.

14 thoughts on “National Commission on Federal Marijuana Policy Proposed”

  1. please come to Northern Virginia, and help us to decriminalise marijuana here in the shaddows of the Capitol
    Would it be helpful if the fedreral Laws were overturned? That seems like impededement/ to what you do.
    Thanks for all your work. and in helping this country to decriminalize marijuana.
    .

  2. I agree, Va should be a top priority based on its proximity to DC and it being such a political battleground state.

    The Shafer commission was mainly ignored due to Nixon’s personal agenda. With a more liberal president in office, maybe this time it will gain some traction!

  3. Thank you for trying to get some of these people who still live in the old days realize , times change , people change , and marijuana laws need to change !! Times are hard and they can’t say that every state can’t use the tax revenue. Thank you Steve Cohen. I also am a democrat and live in Tennessee. And you would think smoking marijuana was dancing with the devil. T all people in favor of marijuana please contact your local government ,and fight for the right to not be discriminated on because you smoke a little weed.

  4. As a Tennessee rep. Shouldn’t you work toward making weed legal in Tennessee as well as trying to make the federal government understand the waste of money. Honestly I question the whole system anyone how looks as the numbers can plainly see the addiction rate for has stained the same while the cost to eradicate keeps going up and you greeting a divide of people and conflict between them while lawmakers never see the blurred front lines most people call there street or home.

  5. Don’t relate this to alcohol!! Alcohol is not medicinal and not related to any of the benefits of Marijuana…so Marijuana should NOT be taxed and regulated like alcohol. It is an herb…like St John’s Wort and other natural treatments, aides and remedies. Let CVS and Walgreens carry it. Marijuana is a natural herb. The first thing the feds need to do is call it what it is and stop referring to it ike it equates to alcohol. It is always all about how you frame a discussion. Always.

  6. Thank-You Congressman Steve Cohen!

    I am glad to see historical reference was made to Nixon’s “Blue Ribbon Commission” led by Raymond P. Shafer. President Nixon was convinced this conservation body of would support permanent placement of cannabis as a Schedule One narcotic. Cannabis was placed in Schedule One in 1970 pending the commission’s findings. When the commission actually recommended decriminalization it did not in fact state that it considered cannabis an herb, but rather in a class similar to alcohol, and as such, discouragement towards use within guidelines similar to alcohol were more desirable than treating it as a criminal offense.

    Ironically, among the findings that were used to a disadvantage with cannabis use was a tendency for users to become “unconventional”. That is about the worst that could be said about cannabis, which makes me laugh as I’ve always been unconventional and encouraged to be just that – that is me the artist, and many others, and how boring a planet we’d be if we were all conventional, playing life in lock-step.

    I also very much agree with Sue Ryan who commented here that cannabis is not anything like alcohol, and is technically simply an herb, or at the very nearest, like hard apple cider. It is not processed and no one wants processed cannabis, such as tobacco cigarettes are processed.

    The federal government has a huge investment in keeping cannabis as a Schedule One narcotic, and the ONDCP who is vested with lying outright to protect that investment using our tax dollars in any way necessary to promote a change in cannabis policy. Why, I’m sure only a select few know, though I and many millions of other Americans know it’s a crock of BS.

    I can only hope this next gen commission is open-minded, honest and undaunted by the politics behind the last 40 – 75 years of cannabis prohibition. I never thought I’d live to see the progressive change that has already happened, and hope this is a rapid beginning of the end of the worst policy our government has ever subjected it’s free citizens to. It’s long past time to Stop the Hurt!

  7. Representative Cohen is savvy and deserves our support. We should write our representatives and ask them to sign on as cosponsors.

    He is not taking a position regarding how cannabis should be regulated. He proposes a commission that would opine on the issue of State vs federal power.

    Politicians usually use Commission recommendations as political cover when they comport with the legislator’s existing position, and ignore them otherwise.

    Times have changed since Nixon, and I suspect that Commission recommendations would support risk reduction, and regulation over prohibition.

  8. I live in Maryland where it is a little know fact that persons with less than 28 grams and their doctor’s approval will NOT BE prosecuted. It is important that everyone who uses cannabis write to their governor and ask for current policy in their state. They should seek out local groups who are continuing to lobby their state and federal representatives. Decriminalization will not expand if the people don’t get VISIBLY in its favor.

  9. I HAVE ALWAYS SAID IT SHOULD BE TAXED LIKE BEER WINE. I MEAN WE WASTE TAX PAYER MONEY ON THIS WHY? WHEN THERE IS MORE TO WORRY ABOUT THEN SOME DAMMED POT HEADS. THE REVENUE FROM SAID TAXES COULD GET US OUT OF THE RED WE SEE EACH DAY. BILLIONS COULD BE MADE IN SHORT TIME. AND TO DEFINE MY POINT PROSATUION IS ANOTHER WAY OUR GOVERNMENT COULD GET OUT OF THIS HOLE THEY PUT US IN. YES I SAID CAUES IT IS SO TRUE. WHY NOT CASH IN ON EITRHER OF THEM?! THERE ARE FOLKS RIGHT NOW IN OUR GOVERNMENT THAT DOES NOT WANT EITHER TO GET LEGILIZED CAUSE THEY ARE THE ONES MAKING THE MONEY ON THEM RIGHT NOW. SO WHY SHOULD THEY BE THE ONLY ONES TO BENIFIT FROM THEM? I SAY WE ALL SHOULD NOT JUST A CHOSEN FEW.

  10. its nice to know that people are finally getting on board and realizing all the benifits of legalization such as crime down, abuse of hard drugs go down, crime down, jobs, hemp production, tax and economic stimulis, uncrowd prisons, and helping the sick people that it will help.. Thank you to the politicians that are working for us and lets get some good change going for once. Thanks Brandon young

  11. he use of St. John’s wort dates back to the ancient Greeks. Hippocrates recorded the medical use of St. John’s wort flowers. St. John’s wort was given its name because it blooms about June 24th, the birthday of John the Baptist. “Wort” is an old English word for plant..-…

    See ya later <http://www.wellnessdigest.co/

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