Cannabis Researchers Concerned Trump Administration May Squash Science
The recent announcement by U.S Attorney General Jeff Sessions calling for the Cole memo to be rescinded has left many people in the cannabis industry nervous about their fate. One group that is voicing especial concern is the number of scientists currently researching cannabis for a litany of reasons, whether it be those studying how cannabinoids can affect the body or testing facilities that analyze samples to ensure produce safety. The research community could be an easy target for federal authorities who may choose to raid labs containing cannabis.
Pot Studies in Peril
“If you are a chemist or pharmacologist teaming up with other researchers to do a study and develop some of these products into a botanical medicine, all you need is a letter from the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to your landlord and you’d lose everything,” according to Biochemist Jahan Marcu, Chief Scientific Officer of Americans for Safe Access, in an interview with Chemistry World. “It creates much more uncertainty, especially since a lot of this research is dependent on grants and investments.”
Prohibition Already Prevents Research
Research on marijuana is already limited due to its Schedule I status on the federal level, meaning the majority of scientists are unable to do peer-reviewed studies that would give people a better understanding of what the plant is and its potential.
In a recent interview, Bill Nye (aka The Science Guy) stated that prohibition of cannabis is not based in science.
“What’s happened with marijuana is it’s a Schedule I drug, which means it’s presumed to be addictive and it’s presumed to have no medical value,” he stated in a recent interview with NowThis. “Yet people are using it for all these medical applications,” he said. “So well, let’s study it. Well, you’re not allowed to study it because it’s a Schedule I drug… So that has to be sorted out.”