President Donald Trump on May 5 signed the $1.1-trillion spending bill that will keep the government running through September 2017, putting aside, temporarily, matters pertaining to the border wall with Mexico and the much-awaited military buildup.
The bill includes a rider, i.e., the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer Amendment, also known as the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment, which protects states with medical cannabis from federal interference. In other words, the bill stops the Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Agency from utilizing federal funds to prosecute medical marijuana businesses in states where medical cannabis is legal.
Since the presidential elections, President Trump has remained silent on any marijuana-related issue. However, after signing the recent bill, he has finally conveyed where he stands with respect to medical marijuana. “Division B, section 537 provides that the Department of Justice may not use any funds to prevent implementation of medical marijuana laws by various States and territories. I will treat this provision consistently with my constitutional responsibility to take care that the laws be faithfully executed,” he said in a statement.
Tom Angell, founder and chairman of Marijuana Majority, an organization striving to transform America’s drug laws, believes that the president’s statement is the federal government’s method of claiming their right to pursue some medical cannabis businesses if they wish to at a later date. However, Angell maintained that the recent statement need not necessarily suggest a federal crackdown on medical marijuana in the near future.
Additionally, Robert Capecchi, director of Federal Policies, Marijuana Policy Project, in a recent email statement expressed the growing comfort level of Congress with the medical and recreational marijuana policies being adopted by several states. “Unfortunately, spending prohibitions like these expire at the end of the fiscal year, so there is still a need for a long-term solution,” Capecchi said.
Cannabis addiction is a reality in U.S.
In the wake of the growing popularity of the pro-cannabis campaigns, which insist on decriminalization of the drug, many fear that harmful and addictive nature of marijuana will get sidelined. Studies suggest that it is almost impossible to grow up in the United States and not be exposed to marijuana. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), more than 22 million Americans aged 12 or older were using marijuana in 2015.
What remains noteworthy is that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has neither recognized nor approved the therapeutic value of marijuana. It continues to be classified as a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act owing to the high potential for abuse. The steady spike in marijuana addiction rates across the country is attributed to the growing ease of availability, perceived harmlessness and the social popularity of the drug across all sections of society.
Researchers at Harvard University have discovered that marijuana use alters brain structure by visibly modifying brain volume. Studies suggest that smoking weed on a regular basis can induce changes in density and volume of the amygdala and nucleus accumbens. Additionally, the psychoactive properties of its primary ingredient – tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — reduces the volume of gray matter that controls motivation, emotions and reward.
A gateway drug
Some researches suggest that early exposure to cannabinoids, particularly during adolescence, could increase vulnerability to addiction to other hard drugs later in life. Experts believe that similar to alcohol and nicotine, marijuana modifies the brain’s reward system by inducing a dopamine rush, which automatically tweaks the brain for a heightened response to other drugs. Moreover, there is a possibility that convenient and fast access to marijuana may tempt users to try other types of hard drugs. This could pave the way for addiction, mental health disorders and other life-threatening consequences. This finding is based on the observation that former users of cocaine or heroin were earlier addicted to marijuana.
Being a long-acting drug, cannabis is known to stay in the system for a longer period of time exposing the individual to several health hazards. Research shows that use of marijuana over a period of time can cause short-term memory loss and chronic smoking can damage the respiratory tract. Experts say that cannabis use may mask an undesirable condition for a while, at least till the high persists. But, when the situation returns more intensely than before, the user is compelled to turn to stronger drugs as cannabis fails to produce the same effect.
In the recent years, the harmful effects of marijuana are becoming increasingly apparent. THC, the neurotoxin present in marijuana, is the main reason why individuals are unable to discontinue its use despite the negative impact on their lives. Besides, marijuana addiction is also known to affect one’s social life as well as career, making it impossible for those in the depths of addiction to break free from the clutches of the drug.
Sovereign Health can help
Research shows that everyone has the neurobiological potential to become an addict. However, in the area of rewards, every individual might not be on the same level, as addicts, where it might be simply hard-wired into their gray matter. Nevertheless, marijuana modifies the brain’s reward system by inducing a dopamine rush, which automatically tweaks the brain for a heightened response to other drugs.
Sovereign Health understands the plight of someone who is unable to discontinue the use of harmful substances despite the negative impact on his or her life. Our customized marijuana addiction treatment programs at reputed marijuana treatment centers are tailored to individual needs in order to treat the person holistically. Treatment at Sovereign Health of San Clemente is designed to help foster marijuana addiction recovery by facilitating treatment for marijuana addiction in one of the best rehab centers in California.
If you or your loved one is battling an addiction to marijuana, get in touch with Sovereign Health to gain access to the latest and innovative residential treatment programs at our state-of-the-art marijuana detox centers in California or marijuana rehab centers spread across the U.S. Our residential treatment facilities are well known for their marijuana addiction recovery programs. Whether you are looking for treatment for marijuana addiction or information about marijuana addiction treatment in California or at a place closer home, call at our 24/7 helpline or chat online to know about the most effective residential treatment programs at our reliable residential treatment centers.
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