As Americans Distracted by Impeachment, Congress Silently Killed Cannabis Reform—Despite Support

By Matt Agorist

In case you have been under a rock, Donald Trump is getting impeached. He is not getting impeached for invading countries on false pretenses, engineering coups to overthrow democratically elected governments in foreign countries, sending weapons to the largest state sponsor of terror in the world, or massively increasing the surveillance state—all of which is provable. He is getting impeached over an alleged quid pro quo scheme to help him get reelected. As Americans sit back and watch the political theater unfold in front of them, the tyrannical and freedom diminishing gears continue turning with bipartisan support. Case in point: on Christmas Eve, Congress summarily shut down cannabis reform that would have massively shifted the paradigm toward freedom.

Over the Christmas break, Congress voted to pass spending legislation for fiscal year 2020. Attached to the 2020 spending legislation was a list of riders intended on making the United States a less tyrannical and freer nation in regards to cannabis. As Newsweek reported:

The riders would have prevented the federal government from interfering with legal cannabis companies and eased their access to U.S. banking services, among other things the industry has said it needs to function properly.

Instead, cannabis businesses––which are fully legal in 11 states to date––will continue to face onerous levels of red tape and uncertainty well into 2020, despite their rapidly growing size and popularity among U.S. consumers.

One of the most significant riders to the spending package would have prevented the U.S. Justice Department from using taxpayer dollars to stop states and territories from implementing their own laws authorizing possession, distribution or cultivation of marijuana. That rider was tossed in favor of a long-standing one that protects only medical marijuana.

But it didn’t stop there. In addition to stripping out all the riders that would have saved taxpayers money by defunding the police state that enforces cannabis laws, the Senate also added anti-cannabis legislation to the bill. According to Newsweek, the Senate added an anti-cannabis rule that prevents Washington, D.C., which relies on Congress for funding, from legalizing marijuana or even reducing the criminal penalties associated with its possession, use or distribution, according to the Congressional Record.

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All of these tyrannical moves against cannabis are in spite of the overwhelming support for legalization. In 2017, a survey found that most Americans favor legal weed. This number is likely far larger now. This move by lawmakers is not only Anti-American and anti-freedom, it is in direct contrast with the will of the American people. Seems legit.

Despite the tyrants in DC attempting to keep this plant in the darkest alleys, all they are doing is prolonging the inevitable and exposing themselves as tyrants.

Starting with Colorado and Washington in 2012, the government’s immoral, violent, and destructive war on marijuana began to come to a grinding halt. Although measures for medical marijuana were enacted long before this, complete legalization paved the way for a revolution.

Aside from the economic benefits and increase in freedom from legal cannabis, legalizing marijuana would have a massive potential to curb the opioid crisis currently gripping the nation.

As TFTP previously reported, in a study published in a peer-reviewed journal, Melvin D. Livingston, Tracey E. Barnett, Chris Delcher, and Alexander C. Wagenaar, set out to see if any association existed between Colorado’s legalization of marijuana and opioid-related deaths in the state.

The researchers looked at all of the available data from the year 2000 to the year 2015. What they discovered may come as a shock to many. While the rest of the nation struggles with a burgeoning fatal opioid and heroin overdose crisis, the State of Colorado saw opioid deaths reduced while its population exploded.

It has long been stated that cannabis is a “gateway” drug, which leads users to experiment with other drugs, leading up to the most deadly, such as heroin. But the researchers in the study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that the availability of safe and legal cannabis actually reduced opiate deaths:

Colorado’s legalization of recreational cannabis sales and use resulted in a 0.7 deaths per month…reduction in opioid-related deaths. This reduction represents a reversal of the upward trend in opioid-related deaths in Colorado.

The researchers concluded, “Legalization of cannabis in Colorado was associated with short-term reductions in opioid-related deaths.”

It’s not just that study either. There were other studies showing that deaths from opioids plummet in states with legal cannabis, and that 80 percent of cannabis users give up prescription pills. A Feb. 2017 study confirmed that opioid dependence and overdoses dropped significantly in medical cannabis states.

In January 2017, the National Academies of Science published an exhaustive review of the scientific literature and found that one of the most promising areas in medical cannabis is for the treatment of chronic pain.

As TFTP reported in 2017, a new experimental study showed exactly how cannabis works to treat actual opioid addiction – by actually blocking the opioid reward in the brain.

This study sought to determine whether the cannabis constituent cannabidiol attenuates the development of morphine reward in the conditioned place preference paradigm. Separate groups of mice received either saline or morphine in combination with one of four doses of cannabidiol using three sets of drug/no-drug conditioning trials. After drug-place conditioning, morphine mice displayed robust place preference that was attenuated by 10 mg/kg cannabidiol. Further, when administered alone, this dose of cannabidiol was void of rewarding and aversive properties. The finding that cannabidiol blocks opioid reward suggests that this compound may be useful in addiction treatment settings.

Those who continue denying the evidence, while continuing to lock people in cages for a plant, will ultimately be judged by history. They will not be the heroes they claim to be now. They will be remembered as the ones responsible for mass incarceration, fostering the police state, and dealing a near-death blow to freedom. Shame on you Congress.


Matt Agorist is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world. Agorist is also the Editor at Large at the Free Thought Project, where this article first appeared. Follow @MattAgorist on Twitter, Steemit, and now on Minds.

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