This may come as a surprise for those of you following the great marijuana debate. Since 1976, the federal government — yes, that federal government that bans pot and lists it as a drug without medicinal value — has supplied a dwindling number of patients with medical marijuana.
The Associated Press recently published a piece documenting the history of this apparent cognitive dissonance, in which four Americans (including an Oregonian) still receive marijuana for various illnesses. In fact, since 2005, they’ve received 100 pounds of weed in the form of finely-rolled joints.
The story provides interesting history. Despite marijuana’s illegality since the 1930s, a federal judge in 1976 ruled that one man’s glaucoma could be relieved in no other way than pot. Since then, a small number of patients are given pot grown on a farm at the University of Mississippi.
Medical marijuana laws are now on the books in 16 states, including Washington. The controversy surrounding the drug will undoubtedly continue. This story shows that it’s not just the states that have trouble being consistent enforcing marijuana laws.