Last week in an unprecedented move, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) removed a controversial and completely untrue document referring to cannabis from its official site. The 37 page PDF entitled, “The Dangers and Consequences of Marijuana Abuse” contained a multitude of outdated and downright non factual information about the “dangers” of using cannabis. The document, which can be read in full here, claimed that among other things, cannabis is a gateway drug, that it leads to “delinquent behavior”, and causes physical and mental health issues.
The document was scrubbed from the site after a few months of pressure from the cannabis activist group Americans for Safe Access (ASA). The group filed a petition on December 5th of last year with the US Justice Department demanding that the DEA remove the misinformation from their site. Coincidentally December 5th, was also the anniversary of the day the 18th amendment was repealed, thus ending prohibition in the US. The ASA petition claimed that the DEA was misleading the public and were thus in violation of the Information Quality Act.
This move in no way signifies any change in attitude by the DEA toward cannabis. The DEA denies that they are acting in response to the ASA petition, and that the document has only been removed temporarily for the purpose of revising it. It is also important to note that when the DEA did scrub the document it was one week past the deadline given in the ASA’s petition.
Somehow I doubt the DEA’s statement. It seems more like an attempt to save face after being called out for lying to the public for year. I’ve always thought that the DEA should change the “D” to stand for “disingenuous”, if you know what I mean. Nonetheless, here’s another small victory for legalization advocates everywhere. In the meantime, keep fighting!
Source: Americans for Safe Access
Image Source: PRI.org
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