Marijuana

States That Legally Regulate Medical and/or Adult Social Use of Marijuana

Related Chapters:
CBD (Cannabidiol)
Hemp
Marijuana Policy Reform - Decriminalization, Legalization, and Medicalization
Medical Marijuana
Driving

Looking for information on synthetic cannabinoids (e.g. "Kush," "spice," "K2," etc.)? Check our chapter on New Psychoactive Substances

Looking for specific, detailed information on cannabidiol (CBD)? In addition to the items below, check out Project CBD.

141. Real Risk of Arrest for Marijuana Possession in the US

"It is also important to point out that in no Western country is a user at much risk of being criminally penalized for using marijuana. The rates of arrest for past-year marijuana users in Western countries are typically less than or equal to 3 percent (Kilmer, 2002; Room et al., 2010). More important, almost none of those convicted of simple possession is incarcerated or receives a fine exceeding $1,000 (Pacula, MacCoun, et al., 2005)."

Kilmer, Beau; Caulkins, Jonathan P.; Pacula, Rosalie Liccardo; MacCoun, Robert J.; Reuter, Peter H., "Altered State? Assessing How Marijuana Legalization in California Could Influence Marijuana Consumption and Public Budgets" Drug Policy Research Center (Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 2010), p. 13.
http://www.rand.org...

142. Marijuana Use Rates and Decriminalization

"In California and Ohio, surveys before and after decriminalisation showed that cannabis use increased, but not at a greater rate than in US states which had not decriminalised cannabis. Single (1989) also reviewed data from two large US national surveys of drug use in the 1970s that compared rates of cannabis use in states which had and had not decriminalised cannabis. He found that the prevalence of cannabis use increased in all states, with a larger increase in those states which had not decriminalised (Single, 1989)."

Donnelly, Neil; Hall, Wayne; Christie, Paul, "Cannabis Expiation Notice Scheme on levels and patterns of cannabis use in South Australia: evidence from the National Drug Strategy Household Surveys 1985–1995," Department of Health and Aged Care (Canberra, Australia: May 1998), p. 12.
health.gov.au...

143. Federal Source of Legal Cannabis

"In 1968, the National Institute of Mental Health began funding a Drug Supply Program to provide researchers with compounds necessary to conduct biomedical research. Initially, the program focused on THC and other naturally occurring cannabinoids, and then gradually expanded to a wide range of compounds. (Since its beginning, the program has synthesized or obtained over 1,500 different compounds that have been supplied to over 2,500 researchers.) Cannabis was among the first substances to be made available through the Drug Supply Program for use by scientists conducting both nonhuman research and human research under a variety of investigational new drug protocols. It was grown through a contract with the University of Mississippi. With its establishment in 1974, NIDA became the successor to NIMH as the administrator of the cannabis contract and the sole U.S. source for legal cannabis."

"Provision of Marijuana and Other Compounds For Scientific Research - Recommendations of The National Institute on Drug Abuse National Advisory Council," National Institute on Drug Abuse (Bethesda, MD: Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, January 1998).
http://archives.drugabuse.gov/...

144. UK Police Foundation

"Our conclusion is that the present law on cannabis produces more harm than it prevents. It is very expensive of the time and resources of the criminal justice system and especially of the police. It inevitably bears more heavily on young people in the streets of inner cities, who are also more likely to be from minority ethnic communities, and as such is inimical to police-community relations. It criminalizes large numbers of otherwise law-abiding, mainly young, people to the detriment of their futures. It has become a proxy for the control of public order; and it inhibits accurate education about the relative risks of different drugs including the risks of cannabis itself."

Police Foundation of the United Kingdom, "Drugs and the Law: Report of the Independent Inquiry into the Misuse of Drugs Act of 1971", April 4, 2000. The Police Foundation, based in London, England, is a nonprofit organization presided over by Charles, Crown Prince of Wales, which promotes research, debate and publication to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of policing in the UK.

145. Recommendation by the Canadian Senate's Special Committee on Illegal Drugs

"... the Government of Canada amend the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act to create a criminal exemption scheme. This legislation should stipulate the conditions for obtaining licenses as well as for producing and selling cannabis; criminal penalties for illegal trafficking and export; and the preservation of criminal penalties for all activities falling outside the scope of the exemption scheme."

"Cannabis: Our Position for a Canadian Public Policy," report of the Canadian Senate Special Committee on Illegal Drugs (Ottawa, Canada: Senate of Canada, September 2002), p. 46.
http://www.parl.gc.ca...

146. 1972 National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse

"Rather than inducing violent or aggressive behavior through its purported effects of lowering inhibitions, weakening impulse control and heightening aggressive tendencies, marihuana was usually found to inhibit the expression of aggressive impulses by pacifying the user, interfering with muscular coordination, reducing psychomotor activities and generally producing states of drowsiness lethargy, timidity and passivity."

Shafer, Raymond P., et al, Marihuana: A Signal of Misunderstanding, Ch. III, (Washington DC: National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, 1972).
http://druglibrary.net...

147. 1972 National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse

"Marihuana's relative potential for harm to the vast majority of individual users and its actual impact on society does not justify a social policy designed to seek out and firmly punish those who use it. This judgment is based on prevalent use patterns, on behavior exhibited by the vast majority of users and on our interpretations of existing medical and scientific data. This position also is consistent with the estimate by law enforcement personnel that the elimination of use is unattainable."

Shafer, Raymond P., et al, Marihuana: A Signal of Misunderstanding, Ch. V, (Washington DC: National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, 1972).
http://druglibrary.net...

148. Marijuana Decriminalization and Prevalence of Use

"Proponents of criminalization attribute to their preferred drug-control regime a special power to affect user behavior. Our findings cast doubt on such attributions. Despite widespread lawful availability of cannabis in Amsterdam, there were no differences between the 2 cities [Amsterdam and San Francisco] in age at onset of use, age at first regular use, or age at the start of maximum use."
"Our findings do not support claims that criminalization reduces cannabis use and that decriminalization increases cannabis use."

Reinarman, Craig; Cohen, Peter D.A.; Kaal, Hendrien L., "The Limited Relevance of Drug Policy: Cannabis in Amsterdam and in San Francisco," American Journal of Public Health (Washington, DC: American Public Health Association, May 2004) Vol 94, No. 5, pp. 840 and 841.
http://ajph.aphapublications.org...

149. Cannabis Substitution Treatment

"Only orally given THC and, to a lesser extent, nefazodone have shown promise [in treating marijuana dependence]. THC reduced craving and ratings of anxiety, feelings of misery, difficulty sleeping, and chills (Haney et al., 2004). In addition, participants could not distinguish active THC from placebo. These findings were replicated in an outpatient study, which found that a moderate oral dosage of THC (10 mg, three times daily) suppressed many marijuana withdrawal symptoms and that a higher dosage (30 mg, three times daily) almost completely abolished withdrawal symptoms (Budney et al., 2007)."

Budney, Alan J.; Roffman, Roger; Stephens, Robert S.; Walker, Denise, "Marijuana Dependence and Its Treatment," Addiction Science & Clinical Practice (Rockville, MD: National Institute on Drug Abuse, December 2007), p. 11.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/p...

150. Decriminalization and Use Rates

"The available evidence suggests that removal of the prohibition against possession itself (decriminalization) does not increase cannabis use. In addition to the Dutch experience from 1976 to 1983, we have similar findings from analysis of weaker decriminalization (with fines retained for the offense of simple possession of small quantities) in 12 US states (Single, 1989) and South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory (Hall, 1997; McGeorge & Aitken, 1997). The fact that Italy and Spain, which have decriminalized possession for all psychoactive drugs, have marijuana use rates comparable to those of neighboring countries provides further support."

MacCoun, Robert and Reuter, Peter, "Evaluating alternative cannabis regimes," British Journal of Psychiatry (London, United Kingdom: American Royal College of Psychiatrists, February, 2001) Vol. 178, p. 127.
http://bjp.rcpsych.org...

151. NIDA Cannabis for Research

"Under the current contract with the University of Mississippi for any given year NIDA [National Institute on Drug Abuse] has the option to grow either 1.5 or 6.5 acres of cannabis, or to not grow any at all, depending on research demand. Generally, 1.5 acres are grown in alternate years. The number of cannabis cigarettes produced from 1.5 acres is about 50,000-60,000, although it can be higher. Cigarettes are produced in three potencies: strength 1 - 3-4 %; strength 2 - 1.8-2.2 %; and strength 3 - placebo, as close to 0% as possible. During the past three years, the following quantities have been shipped: 1994 - 24,000 cigarettes; 1995 - 23, 100 - cigarettes; and 1996 17,700 cigarettes. Virtually all of the cigarettes shipped in the last three years have been for single patient INDs. As of March 1997 there were 278, 100 cigarettes in stock. The cigarettes are maintained in frozen storage and have a useful life of approximately five years."

"Provision of Marijuana and Other Compounds For Scientific Research - Recommendations of The National Institute on Drug Abuse National Advisory Council," National Institute on Drug Abuse (Bethesda, MD: Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, January 1998).
http://archives.drugabuse.gov...

152. Synthetic Cannabinoids

"Synthetic cannabinoids are substances chemically produced to mimic tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active ingredient in marijuana. When these substances are sprayed onto dried herbs and then consumed through smoking or oral ingestion, they can produce psychoactive effects similar to those of marijuana."

Sacco, Lisa N. and Finklea, Kristin M., "Synthetic Drugs: Overview and Issues for Congress," Congressional Research Service (Washington, DC: Library of Congress, October 28, 2011), p. 5.
http://www.fas.org...

153. Synthetic Cannabinoids

"Synthetic cannabinoids are functionally similar to delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive principle of cannabis, and bind to the same cannabinoid receptors in the brain and peripheral organs."

Fattore, Liana and Fratta, Walter "Beyond THC: the new generation of cannabinoid designer drugs," Frontiers in Behaviorial Neuroscience (Lausanne, Switzerland: September 2011) Volume 5, Article 60, p. 1.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov...

154. Use of "Spice" and Other Synthetic Cannabinoids Among Young People In The US

"MTF first addressed the use of synthetic marijuana in its 2011 survey, by asking 12th graders about their use in the prior 12 months (which would have covered a considerable period of time prior to the drugs being scheduled). Annual prevalence was found to be 11.4%, making synthetic marijuana the second most widely used class of illicit drug after marijuana among 12th graders. Despite the DEA’s intervention, use among 12th graders remained unchanged in 2012 at 11.3%, which suggests either that compliance with the new scheduling has been limited or that producers of these products have succeeded in continuing to change their chemical formulas to avoid using the ingredients that have been scheduled. In 2012 for the first time 8th and 10th graders were asked about their use of synthetic marijuana; annual prevalence rates were 4.4% and 8.8%, respectively. Use in all 3 grades dropped in 2013, but the decline was significant only among 12th graders. The 2013 rates were 4.0%, 7.4%, and 7.9% for 8th, 10th, and 12th graders, respectively. Among 8th graders, this was the third highest category of illicit drug being used after marijuana and inhalants."

Johnston, L. D., O’Malley, P. M., Miech, R. A., Bachman, J. G., & Schulenberg, J. E. (2014). Monitoring the Future national results on drug use: 1975-2013: Overview, Key Findings on Adolescent Drug Use. Ann Arbor: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan, p. 13.
http://www.monitoringthefuture...

155. "Spice" and Synthetic Cannabinoids

"Despite its [marijuana's] long history of use and abuse for both medical and recreational purposes, a new generation of synthetic cannabinoids has recently emerged on the market, which are sold on the Internet as herbal mixtures under the brand names of 'Spice,' 'Spice Gold,' 'Spice Diamond,' 'Arctic Spice,' 'Silver,' 'Aroma,' 'K2,' 'Genie,' 'Scene' or 'Dream,' and advertised as incense products, meditation potpourris, bath additives, or air fresheners. These products are often referred to as 'herbal highs' or 'legal highs' because of their legal status and purported natural herbal make-up."

Fattore, Liana and Fratta, Walter "Beyond THC: the new generation of cannabinoid designer drugs," Frontiers in Behaviorial Neuroscience (Lausanne, Switzerland: September 2011) Volume 5, Article 60, p. 1.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov...

156. Synthetic Cannabinoids K2 and "Spice"

"Clemson University Professor John Huffman is credited with first synthesizing some of the cannabinoids, such as JWH-018, now used in 'fake pot' substances such as K2. The effects of JWH-018 can be 10 times stronger than those of THC. Dr. Huffman is quoted as saying, 'These things are dangerous—anybody who uses them is playing Russian roulette. They have profound psychological effects. We never intended them for human consumption.'"

Sacco, Lisa N. and Finklea, Kristin M., "Synthetic Drugs: Overview and Issues for Congress, Congressional Research Service (Washington, DC: Library of Congress, October 28, 2011), p. 5.
http://www.fas.org...

157. "Spice" and Other Herbal Highs

"‘Spice’ and other ‘herbal’ products are often referred to as ‘legal highs’ or ‘herbal highs’, in reference to their legal status and purported natural herbal make-up (McLachlan, 2009; Lindigkeit et al., 2009; Zimmermann et al., 2009). However, albeit not controlled, it appears that most of the ingredients listed on the packaging are actually not present in the ‘Spice’ products and it is seems likely that the psychoactive effects reported are most probably due to added synthetic cannabinoids, which are not shown on the label. There is no evidence that JWH, CP and/or HU [three chemically distinct groups of synthetic cannabinoids] compounds are present in all ‘Spice’ products or even batches of the same product. Different amounts or combinations of these substances seem to have been used in different ‘Spice’ products to produce cannabis-like effects. It is possible that substances from these or other chemical groups with a cannabinoid agonist or other pharmacological activity could be added to any herbal mixture (17) (Griffiths et al., 2009).
"The emergence of new, smokable herbal products laced with synthetic cannabinoids can also be seen as a significant new development in the field of so-called ‘designer drugs’. With the appearance, for the first time, of new synthetic cannabinoids, it can be anticipated that the concept of ‘designer drugs’ being almost exclusively linked to the large series of compounds with phenethylamine and tryptamine nucleus will change significantly (18). There are more than 100 known compounds with cannabinoid receptor activity and it can be assumed that further such substances from different chemical groups will appear (with direct or indirect stimulation of CB1 receptors)."

"Understanding the 'Spice' phenomenon," European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 2009), p. 21.
http://www.emcdda.europa.eu...

158. Prevalence of Synthetic Cannabinoid Use Among Young People in the US

"Synthetic marijuana, so named because it contains synthetic versions of some of the cannabinoids found in marijuana, is a recent and important addition to the smorgasbord of drugs available to young people in the US. These designer chemicals are sprayed onto herbal materials that are then sold in small packets under such brand names as Spice and K-2. They have been readily available as over-the-counter drugs on the Internet and in venues like head shops and gas stations. While many of the most widely used chemicals were scheduled by the Drug Enforcement Administration in March of 2011, making their sale no longer legal, purveyors of these products have skirted the restrictions by making small changes in the chemical composition of the cannabinoids used. Use of these products was first measured in MTF in 2011 in a tripwire question for 12th graders, asking about their frequency of use in the prior 12 months (see Table 2-2). Annual prevalence was found to be 11.4%, making synthetic marijuana the second most widely used class of illicit drug after marijuana that year. In spite of the DEA’s scheduling of the most common ingredients, use among 12th graders remained unchanged in 2012, with 11.3% annual prevalence. Eighth and 10th graders were also asked about use of these drugs in 2012, and their annual prevalence levels were 4.4% and 8.8%, respectively, making synthetic marijuana the second most widely used illicit drug among 10th graders, as well, and the third among 8th graders behind marijuana and inhalants. In 2013 use dropped appreciably in all five populations, including statistically significant drops among 12th graders, college students, and young adults. These declines continued in 2014 with significant drops in prevalence among young adults, college students, 12th and 10th graders (a decline among 8th-grade students was not statistically significant). Efforts by the DEA and various states to make their sale illegal may well have had an impact. In 2015 prevalence continued to decline for 8th, 10th, and 12th grade students, although none of the one-year declines were statistically significant. Among young adults and college students prevalence has leveled, with signs of a possible reversal in course with a slight uptick of .2 points (ns) for young adults and .6 (ns) for college students. There is a relatively low level of perceived risk for trying synthetic marijuana once or twice, despite growing evidence of serious problems resulting from the use of these drugs."

Miech, R. A., Johnston, L. D., O’Malley, P. M., Bachman, J. G., & Schulenberg, J. E. (2016). Monitoring the Future national survey results on drug use, 1975–2015: Volume I, Secondary school students. Ann Arbor: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan, pp. 15-16. Available at http://monitoringthefuture.org...
http://monitoringthefuture.org...

159. "Spice" Prohibition

"Because of health concerns and the abuse potential of herbal incense products, many have been banned in several European countries, 18 U.S. states, and the U.S. military.33,38 In March 2011, the FDA placed 5 synthetic cannabinoids (JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200, CP-47,497, and cannabicyclohexanol) on Schedule I, making them illegal to possess or sell in the United States.38"

Pierre, Joseph M., "Cannabis, synthetic cannabinoids, and psychosis risk: What the evidence says," Current Psychiatry (Parsippany, NJ: September 2011) Vol. 10, No. 9, p. 56.
www.mdedge.com...

160. Scheduling of "Spice"

"On March 1, 2011, the DEA used its temporary scheduling authority and issued a final rule to place five synthetic cannabinoids on the list of controlled substances under Schedule I of the CSA.26 The five substances are
"• 1-pentyl-3-(1-naphthoyl)indole (JWH-018);
"• 1-butyl-3-(1-naphthoyl)indole (JWH-073);
"• 1-[2-(4-morpholinyl)ethyl]-3-(1-naphthoyl)indole (JWH-200);
"• 5-(1,1-dimethylheptyl)-2-[(1R,3S)-3-hydroxycyclohexyl]-phenol (CP-47,497); and
"• 5-(1,1-dimethyloctyl)-2-[(1R,3S)-3-hydroxycyclohexyl]-phenol (cannabicyclohexanol; CP-47,497 C8 homologue).
"Pursuant to the temporary scheduling authority, these substances will remain on the list of Schedule I controlled substances for one year, and then may be given one six-month temporary extension. To remain on Schedule I thereafter, the substances would need to be permanently scheduled within the CSA."

Sacco, Lisa N. and Finklea, Kristin M., "Synthetic Drugs: Overview and Issues for Congress, Congressional Research Service (Washington, DC: Library of Congress, October 28, 2011), p. 6.
http://www.fas.org...

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