Over 100 Comments Already Submitted on DEA’s Marijuana Rescheduling Decision: Here’s How to View Them

Earlier today, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) officially published in the Federal Register its proposal to reschedule marijuana, kicking off the legally required 60-day public comment period. Within hours, over 100 comments have already been submitted.

The DEA’s proposal would move marijuana from its current classification as a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act to a Schedule III substance. This change would greatly ease access to marijuana research, legalize marijuana compounds for medical use nationwide, and provide medical marijuana patients and businesses in states where it’s legal a range of federal protections.

Today’s publication in the Federal Register gives the public until July 22 to provide comments, sharing their opinions and suggestions. Following the public comment period, the DEA will review all submissions to assess public opinion. This process will culminate in a final hearing and the issuance of a final ruling.

All of the comments provided to the DEA are a matter of public record and can be viewed here. As of nearly 11am PT, over 100 comments have already been submitted. The vast majority of these comments are either in support of rescheduling marijuana or advocating for the DEA to go further and deschedule it altogether. Only a few suggest that the DEA retain marijuana as a Schedule I drug.

Thomas Bogg commented, “Finally some good legislation. It’s time to stop treating using a plant with many medicinal uses as a criminal action. This is good for the USA.”

Andrew Stammworthy said, “I fully support the rescheduling of marijuana to a lower level. I believe the legalization efforts across the country and frequent use by a large section of the population show that the original classification was a mistake.”

Many of the comments urged the DEA to fully deschedule marijuana. Megan Diamondstein stated, “Rescheduling cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule III, as the Department of Health & Human Services and the DEA have proposed, is insufficient. If cannabis remains on the CSA, people can continue to face penalties at the federal level for possession, including arrest and incarceration, which lead to a lifetime of consequences that impact someone’s ability to secure employment, housing, public benefits, educational opportunities, and more.”

She added, “The criminalization of cannabis—a legacy of the War on Drugs—was a policy decision rooted in racism. In the decades since, its enforcement has been disproportionately targeted at Black people and other people of color. It’s time to abandon this draconian approach. I support descheduling cannabis from the CSA—a step toward righting the wrongs of its criminalization.”

Zach Newman shared a similar sentiment, saying, “While rescheduling cannabis as Schedule III would be a step forward, acknowledging it has medical uses, it should be completely descheduled. President Biden has said many times that no person should be in jail for cannabis, and simply rescheduling it continues its status of federal illegality.”

Christopher Bourg commented, “Rescheduling cannabis is a good first step. However, cannabis needs to be fully descheduled. Also, medical cannabis patients should not have to fear losing their careers over positive drug tests for past use of cannabis. Test for impairment only for safety-sensitive employees. No one should have to fear losing their careers over taking doctor-prescribed or recommended medication.”

To view more comments, click here.

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