According cannabis.That’s all well and good, but Attorney General

According to a Quinnipiac poll conducted in August 2017, 94% of Americans support legalized medical marijuana, and 75% believe that the federal government needs to support the states that have chosen to legalize cannabis.That’s all well and good, but Attorney General Jeff Sessions doesn’t agree with the vast majority of Americans.  If it were up to him, the federal government should raid, shut down, seize the profits and throw all of those connected with currently state legal marijuana sales in prison.  With Sessions rescinding the Cole Memo and enacting the Marijuana Enforcement Memorandum, he now has the ability to wage war with the state-legalized industry at his whim.Sessions’ antiquated opinion that marijuana is akin to the Devil is one not supported by the majority of Americans.  According to a new Gallup poll, 51% of Republicans now support legalization of marijuana, a figure that has shot up 9 points since their poll conducted just one year before.  Democrats and Independents support legalization by 72% and 67%, respectively.  http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/25/politics/marijuana-legalization-republicans-poll/index.htmlAs long as pot is considered a Schedule I substance by the federal government, there is always a chance these state-approved programs could be in serious jeopardy.  Banks do not want to fund a venture that could be shut down at any moment by the federal government.  This potential financial instability could certainly make new ventures in recently-legalized Vermont, Maine and Massachusetts much harder to get off the ground. Congress needs to legalize and regulate marijuana at the federal level just like it does with alcohol and tobacco.  With pot being legal, the DEA can allow for more scientific research on the benefits of marijuana use, and would also allow the FDA to regulate and use it in prescribed medications.  https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/legal-marijuana-thrive-trump-era-congress-must-legalize-it-ncna835011Until there is federal support of cannabis legislation, this social issue is going to remain a ping pong battle every time an administration changes at both the state and federal level.  With the laws constantly changing, no one will know what is legal and what is not, ending in mass confusion.While Trump was on the campaign trail, he was famously quoted as wanting to leave marijuana legalization to each state’s vote.  Now in office, he has changed his mind.  He now states that because there is a federal law in place, it is the government’s job to enforce it.Regardless of where you stand on legalized recreational use, there are also the people who have been certified by their physicians to qualify as a recipient of medical marijuana.  Colorado reported in November 2017, they had over 85,000 people listed as being registered eligible for medical marijuana use.  Over 5,000 new certifications were issued that month, mainly for the treatment of severe chronic pain, severe nausea and cancer.http://www.ncsl.org/research/health/state-medical-marijuana-laws.aspx  For patients needing cannabis to help with symptoms of disease and injury, the Marijuana Enforcement Memorandum could end the relief from their symptoms that cannabis use currently provides.Even Canada is getting ready to legalize marijuana with a bill believed to be passed by July 2018.  “I think it is broadly recognized that criminalizing cannabis has been a failure,” said Senator Tony Dean of Ontario, a sponsor of the bill.  The bill is widely backed by the constituents and supported by Prime Minister Trudeau, and retailers are already stocking up to sell the moment approval is in place.Once again, we need to take note of our enlightened neighbor to the north.  Their government has listened to their constituents and plans to put in place a way to legalize, regulate and enforce the laws necessary to make this a win for both their government and the people.Abraham Lincoln famously stated we are a “government of the people, by the people, for the people.”  Shouldn’t that mean the public opinion be considered on a topic that the American people overwhelmingly support?  Yeah, I thought so, too.Maria Dampman