Sunday, September 30, 2007

Medical Marijuana Still Illegal?


Just read a story about Federal agents in California shutting down "a factory that made marijuana-laced barbecue sauce, chocolate-covered pretzels and other 'enhanced' snacks intended for medical users of the drug."

The article has one sentence that I found especially surprising. It reads "Federal authorities contend that marijuana is an illegal drug, no matter how it used or who uses it, and they don't honor the state laws."

I don't care much about pot but I am interested in government issues like state's rights and this statement didn't sound right. I did some searching and discovered that in 2005 the Supreme Court ruled in Gonzales v. Raich that the federal government can ban marijuana even in states where it is approved for medical purposes. So even though California "legalized" medical marijuana it is still illegal by federal law which supersedes state law.

The case and the rational for this decision was well described on its wikipedia article.

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