Marijuana proponents in The Golden State want the federal government to remove the substance from its list of most dangerous drugs, but one advocate for a drug-free state doesn't think that will happen.
The Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis filed a petition that asks the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to remove marijuana from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act -- the list that includes drugs that are unsafe, not accepted for medical use in the United States, and those that have the potential to be highly abused.
Though the DEA rejected the request, marijuana supporters say they will not give up, as they plan to appeal the decision in the Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
"My feeling is that, number one, I think it's good that it's probably going for review again. But I don't think the answer will be any different than it has been for the last 30 or 40 years," notes Roger Morgan, chairman and executive director for the Coalition for a Drug Free California.
The DEA previously delayed to review the filed petitions, but the pro-pot coalition requested a judge to force the administration to respond within 60 days. Marijuana supporters claim they have "foiled the government's strategy of delay" and can now show that marijuana has therapeutic value. But Morgan contends that "medical marijuana" is a hoax.
"The term 'medical marijuana' was actually coined by the founder of NORML, which is the National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws," he explains. "A guy named Keith Stroup told an audience at Emory University, I think in 1979, that they would use the term 'medical marijuana' as a red herring to give it a good name as the first step toward legalization for recreational use."
Proponents of the drug maintain that the federal government is seeking to undermine medical marijuana, and they want that to change.
Becky Yeh - OneNewsNow California correspondent - 7/18/2011