Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said that he and other Democrats are ready to advance the controversial marijuana legalization cause.
“He [Biden] said he’s studying the issue, so [I] obviously want to give him a little time to study it. I want to make my arguments to him, as many other advocates will,” Schumer said in an interview with Politico. “But at some point we’re going to move forward, period.”
During Biden’s presidential campaign, he didn’t endorse legalizing marijuana, and after taking office, reportedly disqualified staffers because they consumed the drug.
Schumer introduced a bill in 2018 to legalize the drug, as part of a pitch for voting Democrat in the then-upcoming election.
“When a few of the early states—Oregon and Colorado—wanted to legalize, all the opponents talked about the parade of horribles: Crime would go up. Drug use would go up. Everything bad would happen,” Schumer told the outlet. “The legalization of states worked out remarkably well.”
Many experts, however, disagree with Schumer’s statements, stating that the legalization of marijuana has caused numerous problems (pdf), including increased crime rates and medical conditions in their patients.
Emergency room doctors in Colorado told The Epoch Times last October about the negative effects marijuana legalization has had on their community.
They said they have seen an increase in all drug use, not just marijuana. Methamphetamine use was up 143 percent, opiates up by 10 percent, and cannabis up by 57 percent, according to data from the ER drug screens over the past seven years.
“If you pump a community full of drugs, you’re going to have to expect everything that’s associated with them. You’re going to have to expect the crime, addiction,” said Dr. Karen Randall.
“We’re the canary in the coal mine. Our kids are failing, our kids are using drugs more. I can’t find health care for them. I can’t find rehab, I can’t find places to put the kids in foster care.”
THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the main psychoactive ingredient in today’s marijuana products, is now being extracted to reach a potency of more than 80 percent. In the 1990s, the average potency of a joint was around 4 percent THC.
Dr. Brad Roberts said he’s seeing more and more patients with psychosis who have no previous psychiatric history and are testing positive only for THC.
Charlotte Cuthbertson contributed to this report.