To be against marijuana law reform in 2018 takes either a massive misunderstanding of the issue or strict belief in propaganda and misinformation. The acting adminstrator for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) met with lawmakers this week about the issues and inadequacies of modern marijuana laws and why they aren't being changed. The lawmakers seemed far more versed in modern cannabis studies than the head of the DEA which caused some confusion but brought light to what might be the core problem. When asked about annual deaths from dangerous opioids that are wreaking havoc across the U.S. the head of the DEA was very familiar, but when asked about the same with cannabis he refused to acknowledge the literal 0 deaths that have ever been recorded attributed to a marijuana ovderdose. The head of the DEA seemed far more concerned with his personal distate for cannabis instead of having been prepared for the meeting by reading up on current studies supporting medicinal value in the plant. Luckily lawmakers were happy to inform him of the several published studies that highlight the value in the plant and the grave need to revisit the official classification of marijuana as an illicit substance. Despite the DEA's strict stance on cannabis not even the head of the DEA could bring himself to call marijuana a gateway drug which may not seem like much but is definitely a step forward.
Johnson began his questioning by asking Patterson how many Americans died from opioid-related overdoses among the 64,000 drug overdose deaths recorded in 2016.
Patterson knew that figure, responding that about 44,000 deaths were the result of opioid-related overdoses. But when asked a follow-up question about marijuana-related overdose deaths, the DEA official said that he didn’t believe there were any officially recorded in 2016, but that he was “aware of a few deaths from marijuana.”
(The DEA itself said there were no known deaths attributed to a marijuana overdose in a 2017 report on drug abuse.)