Pot. Mary J. Cannabis. Grass. Dope. Ganja. Smokinnn a doobie. Whatever you want to call it, Marijuana is a hot topic in the news and political arena. Twenty-eight states and Washington, D.C. have made marijuana legal for medicinal purposes. Seven states and the Washington, D.C. have laws legalizing marijuana for recreational use. In states like California, dispensaries look more like the Apple Store than pharmacies, with the special stuff coming in different flavors, potencies and products, like grape or butterscotch pot gummy bears. But is pot really legal in these states? Is it safe?
Marijuana is actually still very much illegal according to federal law. What this means is that Congress, the group in D.C. that makes federal law (federal > state), decided that Mary J is a dangerous drug, and that distribution and sale of marijuana is a crime. Medicinal marijuana has also not received federal approval from the Food and Drug Administration. In 2013, the Feds sent out a memo that basically said, we’re going to stay out of the picture, unless the marijuana use involves giving marijuana to minors, giving money from marijuana sales out to gangs and cartels, and other bad things like using Mary J as a cover up to traffic “harder drugs.”
The feds were specific that they would be strict about enforcing the use of marijuana in Federal lands, so if you were going to bring those gummy bears on your next camping trip in the national park, think again (note: bringing food on a camping trip also attracts bears).
If you live in one of the places where medical or recreational marijuana is legal, you probably won’t be arrested for carrying or using a small amount of pot. That being said, the Feds have said it’s illegal and the potential for danger is uncertain. Try these special brownie protein bites instead.