June 21, 2018, Texas
Last week, GOP convention was held in Texas attended by more than 10,000 delegates. From gay rights to immigration, a lot of issues have been discussed in the convention and become part of final platform declaration. Among these issues, cannabis also got considerable traction from the delegates.
In the exposition area, three pro-cannabis and one anti-cannabis booth were present. They were set up to ensure a better understanding of the issue among the delegates before voting on the platform. The platform had more than 300 planks in which four are associated with cannabis and hemp. Let’s have a look on these approved planks, showing that the Republican point of view on cannabis is gradually moving in the right direction.
To Make Minor Marijuana Possessions a Civil Offence
One platform item reads that minor possession of cannabis should be treated as civil offense instead of criminal offense. It also suggests setting the fine of $100 for the possession of one ounce or less of cannabis without imposing any prison term. Currently, people can get up to six month jail time and $2,000 fine if they are caught with two ounces of .
Rescheduling of Cannabis in Federal Controlled Substance Act
One plank also demands to reschedule the status of cannabis in the federal law book. Cannabis is classified as a controlled substance under Schedule I at present along with other deadly drugs. The platform asks the Congress to move cannabis to the Schedule II.
Schedule I drugs are not allowed to use under any circumstances. However, Schedule II drugs can be used in some cases with pretty severe restrictions.
Expansion of the State’s Medical Cannabis Program
The Republican delegates also want to expand the scope of Texas’s medical marijuana program. They call for allowing the certified physician to determine whether or not the administration of MMJ will be suitable for the patient. As of now, doctors can only write referrals for patients suffering from one of the diseases from the list of qualifying conditions.
Acknowledgment of Hemp as an Agricultural Commodity
One of the planks also asks for recognizing hemp as a cash crop and push for devising legislation for allowing the cultivation and processing of hemp and the manufacturing of hemp products. From construction material to clothing and biofuel, hemp can be used as a substrate in many industrial processes.
What Activists Think of GOP Platform?
Marijuana activist of the state has applauded the GOP platform for its reformative stance on the strain. Spokesperson of Texans for Responsible Marijuana policy, Mario Fazio, thinks that the all the proposals will definitely help in bringing a positive change regarding cannabis policy in the state.
Fazio has pointed out that the state is arresting more than 50,000 people on minor cannabis charges annually. With decriminalization, the state can save a significant amount of law enforcement resources that can be used to curb other serious crimes. Similarly, providing physicians the authority to take the decision on MMJ treatments will benefit more patients.
Marijuana stays in the news, and Alice is always ready to keep us updated. A world traveler and lover of freedom, Alice knows what is going on, no matter where she roams. She specializes in marijuana legalization stories across the globe, with up to date... [read more]