Earlier this week the new leader of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) stated that marijuana probably isn’t as bad a heroin, deviating from his predecessor’s previous statements.
Acting administrator Chuck Rosenberg said his agents weren’t prioritizing marijuana enforcement, even though no one has been ordered off of them yet.
According to Rosenberg, he still thinks marijuana is dangerous:
If you want me to say that marijuana’s not dangerous, I’m not going to say that because I think it is. Do I think it’s as dangerous as heroin? Probably not. I’m not an expert.
Well, expertise in drugs isn’t something you want in a DEA leader.
If you listen closely, you’ll hear millions of Americans collectively saying “duh” to Rosenberg’s comments, especially since four states have already legalized marijuana for recreational use and many citizens already believe pot is safer than heroin.
Over the past 10 years not a single person has died of a marijuana overdose. On the other hand, reports showed that the heroin death rate jumped from 0.7 deaths per 100,000 people in 2000 to 2.7 deaths per 100,000 in 2013; and between 2010 and 2013, the death rate increased by six percent again, according to Medical Daily.
So, this looks like a very small step in the right direction.
“This is not a matter of opinion,” Dan Riffle, the director of federal policies at the pro-legalization Marijuana Policy Project, says. “It’s far less harmful than heroin and it’s encouraging that the DEA is finally willing to recognize that.”
Eventually Rosenberg might come around and see the benefits of marijuana; but for the time being, we’ll just hope he comes to see that it isn’t as dangerous as other substances, unlike the DEA’s previous administrator.
H/T U.S. News
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