Since 1986 when California approved the use of medical marijuana, an additional 18 states have approved its medical use. Our MMJ approval has been in place here in Colorado for 12 years, and now we have approved recreational use, along with Washington State. Thirteen States have decriminalized the use of cannabis, and the ball is beginning to roll. Pro-cannabis legislation has been introduced in 27 statehouses in 2013, nine to tax and regulate cannabis like alcohol, and in 18 states to lessen penalties or approve medical use. It may be possible that Alaska could be the next state to legalize recreational use, with California and several others will vote in 2016. A slight majority of Americans, 52%, favor legal cannabis, and its use has gone mainstream, putting pressure on federal laws to change. Legalization of recreational use in Colorado and Washington State is the greatest forward move since the approval of MMJ use in California in 1996, with 15 to 20 states likely to approve recreational use in the next two to four election cycles, according to Allen St. Pierre of NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. According to a 1999 report from the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, cannabis could mitigate nausea, appetite loss, pain and anxiety for severely ill patients. Three University of California studies since 2007 have concluded that cannabis relieves neuropathic pain for MS patients, HIV/AIDS, and diabetes. By 2020, St. Pierre believes that there will exist a 60% approval rating among Americans, making MJ “completely politically viable.”
Mon Dieu! That I should live to see the day….