President Joe Biden began his first State of the Union Address laying out the numerous ways that he is working to support the people of war-torn Ukraine. He went on to describe his triumphs in turning around the economy post-pandemic and then rattled off several issues that he says need to be dealt with like crime, infrastructure, childcare, opioid abuse, veterans care, even going so far as to cure cancer, but the one element that was sorely lacking from the speech – cannabis.
Don’t get me wrong, I did not ever expect Biden to announce the legalization of cannabis or even announce his willingness to finally maintain his campaign promises of decriminalizing pot or releasing those in federal prison for non-violent marijuana offenses. However, I would like President Biden to open his eyes and recognize that cannabis is the one plant that could actually help with all the problems he described.
First, President Biden wants Congress to pass his infrastructure plan to provide us with better roads, bridges, and jobs, who wouldn’t want that? Why don’t we build the next generation of infrastructure in this country with hemp? The hemp industry is ready to take its place on our roads, in our textiles, and in job markets with its inclusion in the 2018 Farm Bill. It’s time for the President to take this industry to the next level, clean up the muddy regulations and provide the industry with the super sites that are necessary to scale up and make it a reality. Let this booming space provide the materials you seek and put American workers back to work.
Like so many other Americans, President Biden would like to see us finally conquer the crippling epidemic of opioid abuse, however, he continues to ignore the amazing potential of medical cannabis. According to the Journal of American Medical Association, researchers have seen a 25% drop in opioid abuse where medical marijuana was legalized. This was not a stat baked up in the back of some hotboxing van, read the report, President Biden, please!!!
Study after study has shown that medical cannabis helps with pain relief and for our warfighters, it has gone a long way to help with PTSD. President Biden needs to look at the research of Dr. Sue Sisley who has dedicated her life to advocating for veterans’ access to cannabis. Her work is providing relief to our veterans who have not been able to find that care at the VA. But even her hands are tied when it comes to being held back by red tape at the DEA and less than ideal government-issued cannabis for her research.
He rounded out his speech talking about finding the cure for cancer. I can’t claim that cannabis cures cancer, but I know researchers who have done amazing work in the space like Mara Gordon. She has seen tumors in children disappear and others go into remission for years. We all know friends who have used cannabis to help a loved one with a better quality of life when their time had come. Right now, these stories remain, just stories in the President’s mind. I would implore the researchers that he turns to take on this inspiring mission of curing cancer to look to cannabis as a possibility.
For the past 7 years, I have had the privilege of being a part of this industry, nay, this community, and every day I learn some new ways that this amazing plant can impact our lives. It is way overdue for the President to step out of his Reefer Madness mindset and learn about what this plant can do or at least do what he promised in his campaign. God Bless America and God Bless Cannabis.