Legalizing cannabis is a long-standing fight we the people are WINNING, with 15 states having legalized the recreational use of cannabis and many more to come -- with your help.
Approaching the legalization of cannabis will depend on “how” the actual law is written in your locality. Overturning federal, state, or county law will differ drastically. Petitions are one of the first steps in legalization. Many resources exist to help you figure out how you can best contribute.
Below, we’ll dive in and see how best you can potentially contribute to the legalization of cannabis.
Types Of Cannabis Legalization
Cannabis legalization can be simplified into three steps, before full legalization.
Levels of cannabis legalization include:
- Full legalization
Below, we’ll take a look at more of the specific details related to each type of legalization.
Decriminalization is a reduction of punishment for the consumption of minor quantities of cannabis.
Eleven states in the United States have decriminalized cannabis in the 1970s.
Since then, no other changes were made until 2001, when Nevada relaunched the movement.
The election of President Carter and the Shafer Commission's recommendations laid the groundwork for the decriminalization campaign.
Nowadays, 16 states have decriminalized cannabis.
In 1996, the first state to establish a well-regulated, nationwide program for medical “cannabis” was California.
Several other states initiated popular ballot measures following California’s example in 1998.
Hawaii was the groundbreaking state that legalized cannabis through state law in 2000.
According to ProCon.org, since 2016, a handful of states have passed laws to provide for the use of medical “cannabis”.
Congress has not done much to change the status of cannabis as a controlled substance.
Currently, 15 states have made recreational use of cannabis legal, including the Northern Mariana Islands.
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) states that the commercial sale of cannabis is permitted in all regions where legalization has been enacted.
According to the FDA, certain derivative drugs are safe and effective for use in adults and children.
Sign The Petition
In online activism, the analysis of the data states that some petitions produce more impact than others.
Organizers still understand the importance of the petition signatures and use them to draw in new group members.
Depending on the state laws, if a petition gathers a certain number of signatures, a popular referendum can change existing laws or amendments.
A popular referendum is governed by regional authorities and thus resulting in direct democracy.
It was only recently reintroduced into the House and the Senate.
The bill proposes that cannabis will be entirely legalized, and all felony records relating to possession would be withdrawn.
This act would also allow medical studies on the use of cannabis in the US.
What If The Petition Gets Enough Signatures, But The Governor Vetoes It?
The procedures that follow the governor’s veto on the petition will depend on various factors such as the state laws, time limit, and the officers regulating the petition.
According to the different state laws, a popular referendum may be organized despite the governor’s veto.
The state’s legislation will determine the time to implement a popular referendum.
It may occur after a short time or after the laws have been passed.
How To Make Cannabis Legal?
The legalization of cannabis is a lengthy process that differs according to the application of the law.
How To Make Cannabis Legal At The Federal Level?
According to the US government website, a cannabis bill is initiated by either a Senator or a Delegate.
The committee’s work is to review, debate, and amend the bill before it is sent to the chamber members for their consideration.
If the bill is approved, it will go through research, debate, modification, and voting at the congress level.
After winning both houses, the Cannabis Bill will be forwarded to the oval office for approval. The final word will be one of the presidents who will approve or veto the bill.
If the bill is vetoed, it is sent back to Congress where members will vote to override or keep the cannabis act.
How To Make Cannabis Legal At The State Level?
The US government website specifies that each state legislation sets its laws, which state court jurisdiction may review.
If a court concludes that a statute does not concur with the state's constitution, it will strike it down.
When a bill has come into effect for a certain amount of days, the governor has the right to veto it.
The pocket veto becomes a formality and cannot be changed by the legislature.
How To Make Cannabis Legal At The County Level?
An ordinance is a legal term for legislation enacted by a local government entity, such as a city, county, or town.
It is possible to legislate a number of subjects, including cannabis system regulations.
There are several parallels in the processes that govern ordinances through states, but each is unique.
A public hearing is usually held for people from the county to comment on the proposed ordinance.
Some ordinances need the approval of a mayor before being officially applied in the locality.
How To Get Active In Legalizing Cannabis?
The first change comes with spreading awareness in the locality.
Despite the shift in people’s perspective of cannabis, various people are still concerned about cannabis’ potential health and social impact.
Through conversations, people will understand the need for cannabis and its benefits.
You could also start sending letters to your state’s cannabis regulating body to learn more about the current status of cannabis.
Has Anyone Attempted To Repeal Cannabis Laws?
Despite the increasing support for cannabis legalization, many conservative lawmakers are strongly opposing the movement.
With futile results in passing bills to criminalize cannabis, they are now appealing to courts and officials for stricter regulations.
Cannabis opponents are anxious about the rise in cannabis consumption after legalization, as a study from the American Journal for Preventative Medicine suggests.
Are There Resources To Help You Legalize Cannabis?
Several organizations, such as the Marijuana Policy Project, equip proponents of cannabis to legalize cannabis.
They provide communities and support to propel their cause further among the population.
You can also use social media platforms to share the benefits of cannabis to shatter the fear that some people may have.
About the author: Joe Powers
After an incident in the military, in 2011, Joe Powers began investigating cannabis by talking with industry leaders. In 2016, Joe launched Hemp Writer with its first publication in clarifying disinformation on specific updates to certain federal CBD laws.
Upon calling out a leading cannabis law firm spreading dis-info, Hemp Writer established itself as an authority in clarifying updated information emerging from the cannabis industry. Joe continues charging forwards with increasing momentum to continue fulfilling his vision of SHARING ACCURATE CANNABIS INFORMATION.