Greater revenue, more jobs, better healthcare, are a result of medicinal cannabis. But the legislation of medicinal cannabis does more. . .It paves the way for those countries to get rid of prohibition of adult-use recreational marijuana.
In America, some states have totally legalized cannabis while others legalized medicinal marijuana. The remaining states and the federal government continue prohibition of marijuana. The prohibition has serious consequences for medical marijuana patients.
When compared to the U.S. federal government, EU nation-states are far ahead.
Lawmakers Are Slow to Progress
Marijuana legislation is a slow process. The majority of legislators ignore the scientific data for reasons of their own. This happens in the EU and at the U.S. federal level.
The EU Nation-States Are Far Ahead
Still, the EU remains far ahead in the progression of favorable marijuana law. As of 2019, 21 EU nation-states give patients some access to medical marijuana. Some of these nation-states even reimburse patients’ prescriptions through state sponsored insurance. That’s unheard of in the U.S.
U.S. Federal Law Denies Access to Patients
Because of the federal prohibition on marijuana, reimbursement is not possible. Federal laws govern insurance whether state sponsored or not. Under federal law the insurance company cannot cover medical marijuana.
U.S. patients must rely on their own resources to access their prescriptions. U.S. companies filling prescriptions are breaking federal law.
EU nation-states and the U.S. federal government have something in common. The type of democracy doesn’t matter. What does matter? Persuading the lawmakers.
The People Want Marijuana
As time passes, more and more people are in favor of legalization of all marijuana.
A majority of people living in EU countries approve of medicinal cannabis use. Polls in New Zealand show 54% of people lean toward recreational cannabis. The polls in the Netherlands show a 70% approval rating. And in Denmark approval ratings are even higher at 88%.
Yet, none of these countries has a direct democracy. The people of the EU nation-states cannot pass favorable cannabis laws on their own. EU nation-states like the Netherlands have referendums people can pass. But the referendum is a suggestion and not a law itself.
In the American states people have direct power to gather signatures and get a law passed. This ballot process legalized medicinal marijuana in California in 1996. The ballot process is responsible for more than 17 of the 40 U.S. states with medical marijuana programs.
Still, the U.S. federal government prohibits marijuana. The people’s ballots do not work at the federal level. For a federal ballot to work, a state official’s approval must be on the document. A serious roadblock at the federal level.
Without the legislators’ backing marijuana reform cannot move forward in either the EU or the U.S.
EU nation-states with medical marijuana have laid the groundwork. Patient accessibility, supply and demand, and licenses present issues. But these issues are solvable.
There’s a bigger problem when America’s federal government ignores the medical needs of its citizens. Denying medical marijuana on a federal level doesn’t solve any problems. It keeps the U.S. in the dark ages.
Federal prohibition is the U.S. government’s way to keep their head buried in the sand. How will the U.S. ever begin to solve problems if they deny all access to marijuana? How will they know how many patients need more access?
EU nation states with medical marijuana programs are light years ahead.
EU nation-states may be years away from full legalization for adults. But, legal medicinal marijuana is much better than prohibition. Progress is good no matter how slow.