In mid-July, around a month after America’s neighbor to the north, Canada, became the second nation to pass a law legalizing adult recreational cannabis (aka marijuana) use, Harris Insight & Analytics conducted an online poll of 2,020 American adults about their thoughts on cannabis use and regulation in the United States. That recently published poll found that 85 percent of surveyed Americans think marijuana should be legal for medicinal use and 57 percent support regulating it for anyone 21 or older.
This Harris poll exhibited a generational gap in cannabis legalization support. And it appears that younger Americans are more certain about their use of the plant. When it came to legalizing cannabis, respondents in favor included: 38 percent of the 65-plus set; 57 percent of 55-to-64-year-olds; 68 percent of 35-to-44-year-olds; and 67 percent of 18-to-34-year-olds. Further, 53 percent of those polled affirmed the opinion that legal cannabis could alleviate the country’s current opioid abuse crisis by preventing deaths by opiate overdose.
Legal cannabis can be a potent painkilling alternative to opioid medications. And when it comes to overdose by cannabis, there are no documented fatalities. The worst-case scenario with excessive cannabis use is anxiety or panic attacks, and that risk increases with use of cannabis edibles and extracts and resulting higher THC consumption levels.
The Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act,” aims to ensure that every US state has the right to decide the best approach to regulating marijuana use within its borders for itself. It also extends the same protections to US territories, federally recognized tribes and Washington, D.C. and contains “common-sense guardrails to ensure that states, territories, and tribes regulating marijuana do so in a manner that is safe and respectful of the impacts on their neighbors.”