Shifting Drug Policy: The Politics of Marijuana
This 2014 master’s thesis states that medical and recreational marijuana legalization, and public acceptance, is in a rapid state of change across the nation. Currently, there are 20 states along with the District of Colombia that have medical marijuana laws. Each of these state governments has passed legislation on a drug for medical purposes, in which the federal government maintains there was, and still remains, no basis for medical use. Additionally, Colorado and Washington have recently passed laws legalizing recreational marijuana use. These state laws are in conflict with the federal Controlled Substances Act and place marijuana in a simultaneous legal and illegal status. This thesis examines the history of the war on drugs and the role of marijuana in traditional policy.