In a move that is set to rock the entire world of cannabis, four U.S. senators, Democrat and Republican, are attempting to bring in an act that would lighten the current restrictions on cannabis. This has been a long time coming and reflects the growing feeling that what was previously considered harmful may have been a whole lot of scaremongering. What’s more is that this bill which is referred to as the “Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States Act” or the “STATES Act” has gotten bipartisan support. A rare enough occasion but especially so for something that has been so divisive in popular culture.
What Does it Mean?
So things will now be set to change on a State level. This would exempt state-legal cannabis from Controlled Substances list. What that means is that there won’t now be a sweeping change for the entire country but rather states that have allowed or legalized cannabis will no longer have to worry about any Federal prohibitions. This is good news for vendors in states like Colorado, where cannabis has been legalized, that still had to worry about Federal prosecution.
STATES Act – Broad Strokes
It should never be forgotten that the United States is just that, a nation built upon the trust between states. As Sen. Gardener (R – CO) says, “If a state like Oklahoma or Kansas or Nebraska chooses for themselves not to do this they do not have to.” It just reinforces what states already want for their citizens and allows for a true sense of democracy.
Some Federal Prohibitions
As with any law, things aren’t as straight-forward and free as we would like. There are still age restrictions around cannabis, for example it would still be illegal for a person under 21 to purchase. Since the legal drinking age is the same this would make sense. Also, there are prohibitions on sales at rest areas and for those under 18 years of age. These things are slight however in comparison to the huge advantages retailers and consumers will have in the cannabis market. You can read the full text of the bill right here.