Should CBD Oil Legalization Be a Bigger Political Issue?
Historically, candidates for office have brushed aside questions about the legalization of cannabis from advocates and activists. Even in states where public opinion polling has long indicated widespread support for legalization — California, for example – politicians have a long track record of dismissiveness and condescension.
When asked about the tax and regulation of marijuana products, then-Attorney General Kamala Harris laughed about the issue and then said her opponent, who had vocalized support for legalization, was “entitled to his opinion”. That was in 2014 – only five years ago. But in that short time, mounting evidence of the benefits of cannabis products, including CBD, has mounted, and public opinion has swung even further toward legalization.
Pharmaceutical Drugs Have Wrecked Lives
47,000 Americans died in 2017 of opioid overdoses. Many more are addicted. Entire communities in rural America have been devastated by addiction and death.
When OxyContin, a powerful opiate narcotic marketed as a long-term pain management treatment, was introduced to the market in 1997, the company pushing the product on patients did little to warn of the devastating health effects.
These same pharmaceutical giants have pumped billions of dollars into the political process through direct contributions, contributions to political action committees, and various lobbying schemes to deregulate themselves and – most importantly for CBD proponents – to keep natural remedies illegal.
The Scheduling Mess
When the federal schedules for banned substances were introduced in 1971, marijuana was inexplicably listed in the same category as heroin and ecstasy. These Schedule 1 drugs are considered the most “dangerous” with the highest potential for abuse – which science has proven conclusively is nonsense in the case of marijuana.
The effect is that legitimate medicine like authentic CBD oil, which does not even produce any “high”, is somehow considered as dangerous as heroin. The reality is that heroin claims tens of thousands of American lives each year and not a single person in the history of the world has ever overdosed on marijuana.
The Economic Argument
Politicians running for office and pundits on TV and radio spend significant time talking about the economy and the need for high-quality jobs. Manufacturing has been particularly devastated in the last 40 years as multinational corporations have moved their production facilities to places like Mexico and China where cheap labor is plentiful and labor protections are non-existent.
CBD oil has huge upsides as the brand-new industry explodes. With billions of new wealth generation on the line, American firms could be the pioneers in the field if the federal government lifted its burdensome regulations which currently make navigating the CBD business creation a nightmare scenario.
American politics has long been dominated by factions that support the nearly autonomous function of the states and disavow the “overreach” of the federal government. This drama has played out in recent years in the marijuana fiasco, as federal and state laws often clash.
In the case of CBD, which offers so much in the way of economic boom and promotion of health, the argument of states’ rights to determine the legality for themselves without interference from federal agencies like the FDA and DEA could not be stronger.
The important economic and cultural questions raised by the current legal status CBD oil makes this topic ripe for exploitation by politicians and interest groups. Moral or practical arguments opposing CBD oil are nearly impossible to make for reasons listed in this article, and a win on the CBD question could spe[l future success for full-on marijuana legalization and other related social victories moving forward.