Some 15 years after voters said yes to medical marijuana, regulators in Washington, D.C. have finally approved the first two grow sites in the district’s history, according to The Washington Times.
It’s taken so long mainly because Congress placed repeated delays on the program and denied it any funding, but city officials got the ball rolling again in 2010 when they unanimously voteD to move forward with implementation.
Compared to states like California, the law is relatively strict. D.C. will eventually allow up to 10 dispensaries, and patients will be able to obtain up to two ounces of the plant per month from specially licensed doctors. Grow sites like the two approved by regulators will be limited to just 95 plants apiece.
Some doctors say that marijuana is useful in treating certain symptoms stemming from HIV/AIDS, chemotherapy, glaucoma, Tourette’s syndrome and numerous other ailments. Similarly, the American Medical Association voted in 2009 to endorse clinical research into marijuana-based medicines and methods of delivery that do not involve smoking. The federal government, however, continues to insist the drug has no medical value whatsoever.
Although the polling firm Gallup found in 2011 that about two-thirds of Americans believe medical marijuana should be legalized, the Obama administration has busted hundreds of dispensaries that were operating legally under state law.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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