Obama Takes Pro-Cannabis Stances in CNN Documentary
April 20th, 2015
Policy, Top News
The latest installment of CNN’s medical marijuana documentary series, WEED 3, featured an interview with President Barack Obama. In the interview, Obama signals support for medical marijuana and the idea of rolling back the federal government’s war on drugs that conflict with many U.S. states.
“You know, I think I’d have to take a look at the details,” said Obama when asked if he supports making major changes to federal medical marijuana policies, “but I’m on record as saying that not only do I think carefully prescribed medical use of marijuana may in fact be appropriate and we should follow the science as opposed to ideology on this issue, but I’m also on record as saying that the more we treat some of these issues related to drug abuse from a public health model and not just from an incarceration model, the better off we’re going to be.”
“One of the great victories of this country has been our ability to reduce incidences of smoking, increase the incidences of seat belt use,” Obama added. “You know, we save tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of lives every single year. We didn’t throw anybody in jail; we just made sure that they were well-informed and if somebody has an addiction, we made sure that we made it easy for them to get help. And I think we need to re-emphasize that approach, because we don’t want to encourage our kids to engage in drug use, but there are going to be more effective ways than, too often, the approach we’re taking today.”
The U.S. had just 40,000 drug offenders in prison back in 1980, but by 2011, the number jumped to more than 500,000. Despite having only 5% of the world’s population, the country has approximately a quarter of its inmates. Many of these inmates were harshly sentenced with long prison terms for nonviolent drug possession or distribution crimes – crimes many consider relatively harmless.
The federal government continues to classify marijuana as a Schedule I Controlled Substance, which is a title reserved for the most dangerous drugs without any accepted medical value. Surprisingly, the other drugs sharing this classification include substances like heroin and LSD, which have a much more significant and established danger profile as so-called hard drugs.
According to recent polls, the majority of Americans support the legalization or decriminalization of marijuana, while 23 states and DC have already legalized medical marijuana. Several studies have shown potential benefits across a number of medical conditions, including cancer, HIV, and Alzheimer’s.
This article was published by CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN), owner and operator of CFN Media, the industry’s leading agency and digital financial media network dedicated to the burgeoning CBD and legal cannabis industries. Call +1 (833) 420-CNFN for more information.
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