The Future of Cannabis is in OUR Hands - but the Timing is Urgent

The Future of Cannabis is in OUR Hands - but the Timing is Urgent

Posted by Madison on Oct 29th 2019

"The absence of conscious consumption in the cannabis space … can have very damaging implications for the consumer, for the industry, and for those who have been directly impacted by the War on Drugs.”- Adam Vine

Last week at the monthly Cannagather event in NY, Senator Liz Krueger took the floor to discuss the forward movements in congress towards Marijuana legalization and regulation. Some of the topics discussed include the SAFE banking act, the Governors Summit, and what we can do to help advance the process. With the explosion of the CBD industry in 2019, many were left asking themselves what went wrong for NY? As one of the most liberal states in the Union, it seems that we are among one of the last to make the change, especially given the decriminalization and forward movements we’ve made in the last year as a nation towards cannabis consumption, use and normalization. Here is a breakdown of what Senator Krueger has to say regarding NY’s progress:

Regarding Regulation and Legalization

  • In the past month NY has made considerable progress towards the legalization and regulation of Cannabis. On October 1st, Congress passed the SAFE Banking Act which “prohibits a federal banking regulator from penalizing a depository institution for providing banking services to a legitimate marijuana-related business.” This is a huge step for Cannabis and Hemp businesses that have been seeking legitimate merchant service options. This is a landmark bill for the house as well, considering congress has not been friendly towards Cannabis in the last year. In fact, CBD food additives were banned as of 10/1 however congress says that the Federal Hemp Guidelines may be coming out in a few weeks which would repeal the ban.

Obstruction in Spite of Facts

  • The Governor’s Summit took place this month wherein NY, NJ, PA, CN, & RI came together to discuss the future of cannabis in the U.S. According to senator Krueger, the participants discussed how to properly regulate legalized and recreational cannabis. One of the regulations they discussed was the ability for officers to test for Cannabis consumption in driving related incidents. This came as a shock for many in the audience as it is well known that Colorado and California, which are driving dependent states, have fully recreational and legalized cannabis without this issue. According to the senator, the republican senate has been vigorously fighting the terms of agreement for legalization by stating there is no approved test for cannabis that does not require blood testing. As you may know, blood testing would require a lot of time and resources and is not an effective way of measuring driving ability in relation to use. It seems like the democratic party has failed the community by not being prepared to argue in our favor with the facts. In fact, an entire section of the pro-cannabis bill was not entered into the system- the C script to be exact- which was a laundry list of requested amendments that were supposed to be the final push in congress to pass the bill. The lack of organization and readiness by the Senate can be challenged by our own persistence in continuing the education and factual evidence around cannabis consumption to surface.

A Call to Action

  • What can we do to make legalization happen in 2020? We must be proactive about learning and spreading the continuously evolving facts about cannabis. We need to present our senators with accurate data to insist that they reckon with it and be obligated to take the facts around cannabis use into account when fighting for our rights. It seems like such a small and insignificant thing to do- but we would not be where we are today without the continuous flow of factual information about the benefits of cannabis use. A year ago today I would not be able to tell you why we deserved to have this plant, but having learned all that I have, I would argue it is dangerous to continue to ignore now.