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Obama Keeps Up His Promise. A Cautious Step In Drug Policy.

Updated on May 4, 2011

During his campaign for Presidency, Barack Obama promised that he would restore respect for science whenever Federal policy decisions are made.  On Monday, 19 October, 2009, he took the first cautious step when his Department of Justice issued a communication directing agency lawyers against prosecuting those who use or prescribe medical marijuana.  But this is limited to states that have legalized the drug for medical purposes.
But it has been categorically clarified that drug traffickers will not be spared.

This announcement represents a very significant departure from the policies of Bush administration and is considered a major breakthrough for those who advocate marijuana for medical purposes.  Patients get relief from pain and nausea related to cancer, AIDS, multiple sclerosis and other malignant diseases.  After Jimmy Carter embarked upon certain enlightened approaches, it is Obama who has embraced science for his drug policy.

The DOJ order clearly states that lawful use of marijuana can be allowed for medical purposes.  The expected next step is to codify the DOJ directive so as to formally put cannabis in the list of Schedule II drugs.  Other States can enact laws permitting use of medical marijuana.

It is arguably clear that Obama is willing to abandon the backward and punitive rules and policies of earlier administrations.


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    • Bovine Currency profile image

      Bovine Currency 8 years ago

      If the state had respect for science, marijuana would be legal or at least while alcohol is readily available, so too should marijuana. Obviously, the case is not that simple but such is the point of science and politics. Science is not based on objective truth. Scientific fact is no more than a valid explanation with sound logic but such is politics, not merely government politics as in policy decisions but the politics that infiltrates society everywhere, in every country. Scientists being paid by governments, academics in private institutions funded by government directly or indirectly through so called philanthropists or independent think-tanks. Qualified opinion is big money. Science is a careful craft and its practioners like all of us can be victim of corruption and a also a tradesmen of the latter craft. I am not a conspiracy theorist. Look at what is underneath, look at the seams and the divisions and the overlaps. We are all corrupt in some sense and we are all politicians.