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Psilocybin and its Overlap With Cannabis use

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Efforts to decriminalize psychedelics like psilocybin, the psychoactive compound in “magic mushrooms,” are gaining traction throughout the U.S. Psilocybin, exactly like cannabis, is a Schedule I controlled substance under the federal Controlled Substances Act. But despite the government’s disapproval, studies show that psilocybin can be an effective tool in treating anxiety, depression, and others from a family of psychiatric and substance use disorders.

https://theemeraldmagazine.com/psilocybin-its-use-research-and-overlap-with-cannabis/?utm_source=sendinblue&utm_campaign=November%20%202022&utm_medium=email



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Cannabis

Does Marijuana Legalization Increase Teen Use? New Study Has Answers

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A federally funded study has found no correlation between marijuana legalization and cannabis use among teens, which is relief for marijuana enthusiasts. At the same time, this study, which was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), has poked holes in the theory that’s often fronted by legalization opponents — that legalization will increase teen consumption of marijuana.

Currently, adult-use marijuana is legal in 21 states and DC. Maryland and Missouri joined this list through the midterm elections that happened barely a month ago.

teens high school
Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

The study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, reviewed data collected from three longitudinal studies relating to use of cannabis among teens in New York, Oregon, and Washington between 1999 to 2021. The researchers found that teens in states that have legalized cannabis are not any more likely to abuse cannabis than teens in states that have not legalized cannabis.

RELATED: Does Marijuana Legalization Increase Alcohol Use? A New Study Might Surprise You

Though preliminary, the results from this study offer a glimmer of hope that marijuana legalization could have more benefit than harm to offer. Study author Jennifer Bailey has, however, advised cautious optimism, saying, “Although things look encouraging now, as we note in our paper, alcohol use increased slowly over 40 years after the end of alcohol prohibition.”  

This article originally appeared on MyCannabis.com and has been reposted with permission.



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Cannabis Legalization in Ireland? – Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana

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Ireland is the latest European country to take a step closer to cannabis legalization. Introduced by a People Before Profit Party member, the bill would legalize cannabis possession for adults over 18.

However, the bill doesn’t include cannabis sales or cultivation. It is more decriminalization than the commercialization of the industry. The bill says possessing up to seven grams “shall be lawful,” despite no commercial market.

A top government official is skeptical that the bill will become law. Right now, it’s in the lower chamber of Ireland’s legislature.

“I hope the government can support this legislation. It is timely. Different parts of the world are looking at different models which do not criminalize people and which take a harm-reduction approach. I look forward to the debate,” said Gino Kenny, the politician who introduced the bill.

How soon until cannabis legalization comes to Ireland?

Cannabis Prohibition in Ireland

Cannabis Legalization in Ireland?

The illegality of cannabis in Ireland stretches back to the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1934, making Ireland one of the first countries to ban cannabis (beating the United States by three years).

And like the United States, cannabis legalization in Ireland may be an uphill battle. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, in response to the popularity of cannabis, the Irish government cracked down by implementing harsher criminal penalties.

Even today, if police catch you “trafficking” a large amount of cannabis, you can face up to 10 years in prison.

That said, despite what the laws say, attitudes and tolerance have adjusted over the last twenty years. This isn’t the first time politicians have introduced a cannabis legalization bill in Ireland.

In 2013, a motion was put forth to legalize cultivation, possession, and a commercial market. However, within the Irish legislature, only eight people voted for it, with 111 voting in favour of continued prohibition.

MMJ in Ireland

In 2016, Gino Kenny introduced a private member’s bill to legalize medical cannabis. (The same politician that introduced the latest cannabis legalization in Ireland bill).

The government was cautious but went forward with it. Over two years, the Irish government only approved two dozen medical cannabis licences.

It wasn’t until June 2019 that medical cannabis legalization in Ireland took off. The Health Minister set up a new program that eased patients’ access by allowing them to buy cannabis at a pharmacy. It also expanded the criteria of who was eligible for medical cannabis.

The government called it a measure of “last resort,” since patients were travelling to countries like the Netherlands to get medical cannabis.

Cannabis Legalization in Ireland When?

There is still pushback about cannabis legalization in Ireland. The Irish prime minister worries that legalization would ” glamorize” cannabis use.

“I think we have to be careful that we don’t glamorize cannabis either because there are real concerns within the health community and the medical community about what cannabis can do to young people,” he told media.

As well, the current Irish government is a coalition between different parties, none of which have a unified (or even favourable) stance regarding cannabis legalization in Ireland.

That said, if cannabis legalization in Ireland becomes a reality, it will likely suffer from the same bureaucratic excesses that strangle cannabis legalization in Canada.

For example, the Irish PM said, “Cannabis can do real harm too, to young people, and many people in the medical world have said that to me. That’s just a concern I have.”

Translation: Cannabis may not benefit young adults. Ergo, I will take the advice of public health and continue with harmful prohibition or bureaucratic decriminalization instead of recognizing that people have a right to bodily autonomy.

It’s the same story no matter where you go. An undemocratic public health order kneecaps your right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

On a positive note, the Irish government announced a Citizens’ Assembly on Drug Use in 2023. If enough people express their desire for a classically liberal, legal market, then cannabis legalization in Ireland may be here sooner than later.





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3 Signs of Cannabis Stigma in Canada – Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana

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It isn’t challenging to find three signs of cannabis stigma in Canada. Canada never legalized cannabis because the war on drugs is immoral or because people have the right to consume a nontoxic plant.

Canadian cannabis legalization was and is still about “public health and safety.”

But it’s clear from these three signs that cannabis legalization was more about lining the pockets of a few select players and a public sector that lives off the taxpayer.

3rd Cannabis Stigma: Excise Taxes

3 Signs of Cannabis Stigma in Canada

Nothing says cannabis stigma better than charging excise taxes on a constitutionally-protected medicine.

But even if you could argue that certain goods and services should be subject to a “sin” tax, how it works in the cannabis industry is nonsensical.

Bureaucrats expected cannabis to sell for $10 per gram. Unlike excise taxes in other industries, producers must pay the sin taxes on cannabis, not retail.

So instead of paying 10% on the finished product, efficient cannabis producers can pay up to 45%. The system works so that the more efficient you are, the more excise taxes you have to pay.

Since legalization in 2018, the Canadian cannabis industry has forked over $15.1 billion in tax revenue. $2.9 billion came from sales and excise taxes.

Far from viewing excise taxes as a “stigma,” the Canadian government (whether represented by the red, blue, or orange team) will continue to take advantage of the cannabis industry.

2nd Cannabis Stigma: Public Health Rules 

3 Signs of Cannabis Stigma in Canada

Nowhere is cannabis stigma in Canada more prevalent than in allowing public health bureaucrats to make significant decisions. Choices better left to the people who actually grow, buy and sell cannabis.

Whether it’s personal possession limits, THC limits, plain-packaging and anti-marketing rules, the criminal regulation of CBD or other arbitrary decisions better left to the consumer and producer. 

The fact remains: Canada’s cannabis industry has a public health problem. And cannabis stigma at Health Canada is a big part of that problem.

Despite the name “public health,” these bureaucrats don’t care about medical cannabis patients. They are attempting to rid Canada of a medical cannabis program.

“Public health” means controlling and regulating you.  Your decisions, your choices, your ethics, your medicine, your diet, your life.

And these people dare to call themselves progressive. There is nothing “progressive” about expanding the scope and influence of the state. 

If Canada had legalized in the 1990s, the Chrétien framework would have been statist. But it at least would have included some common sense. 

1st Cannabis Stigma: Expunging Records & Illicit Markets 

Legalization is about expunging criminal records and permitting growers and vendors to join the legal regime.

Suppose you voted Liberal in 2015 because they said they would legalize cannabis. Would you have still made the same decision knowing now what they meant by “legalization?”

  • That the Liberals wouldn’t legalize the BC Bud culture, and in fact, incorrectly categorized it as violent, organized crime.
  • That no expungements would be made. Former cops and politicians will cash in on legal weed, but not the nonviolent “criminals” still behind bars or those who face restrictions based on their past with cannabis.
  • That an entirely new plastics industry would develop and create more than enough waste to offset any benefit of banning plastic straws and single-use shopping bags
  • That recreational cannabis would be an excuse to undermine and eventually eradicate the medical cannabis program.
  • That we’d have a 10mg THC limit on edibles
  • That veiled window coverings and plain-packaging would be the retail norms? (If that doesn’t increase cannabis stigma, then what does?)
  • That cannabis producers wouldn’t be able to build brands, and market like beer, liquor, and wine companies do

Many American states that have legalized cannabis also included expungement of criminal records. After all, that is what legalization is about. Nothing says “cannabis stigma” more than not expunging nonviolent criminal records for weed.

What Happened with Legal Weed in Canada?

3 Signs of Cannabis Stigma in Canada

What Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party did was corporatize cannabis. The only silver lining to Canada’s legalization is the home-growing aspect. 

But even that is handicapped by two facts: there was considerable debate about allowing home-growing. Second, it’s unlikely they would have approved home-growing if it wasn’t for the Allard injunction.

The Allard injunction gives patients a constitutional right to reasonable access to cannabis. This includes home-growing. Without it, would the Liberals have extended the same courtesy to recreational growers?

Quebec hasn’t. Canada’s French-speaking province has the most strict regime in the country. Edibles are more-or-less banned, and the courts have upheld their home-growing ban (so far).

It isn’t difficult to find three signs of cannabis stigma in Canada. The rules around legalization cause new stigmas and maintain older ones.

Canada’s cannabis legalization is not the model for the world to follow. Just as Justin Trudeau is not the kind of political leader other countries should strive for.

People have a fundamental right to their bodies. Many people on the left recognize this when the topic is abortion. People on the right recognize this when it comes to vaccine mandates.

But once you bring up drugs, even a “soft” drug like cannabis, all rationality disappears. The left has no problem adhering to “public health” mandates even if they defy common sense. And the right has no problem demonizing drugs, even medical marvels like cannabis.

Canada’s cannabis stigma is still alive and well. It’s a lonely place for the freedom-loving toker.

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