DEA Admits Cannabis Is Less Dangerous Than Heroin
By Cannabis Now
The Drug Enforcement Administration has long stood by the outdated and unscientific classification of cannabis as a Schedule I drug along with heroin, LSD and ecstasy under the Controlled Substances Act. In 2012, the DEA’s then-Administrator Michele Leonhart dodged questions from a House committee about whether or not hard drugs such as meth and heroin were worse for a person than cannabis by parroting back the response “All illegal drugs are bad” 11 times. But Leonhart resigned this May and the DEA’s new leadership appears to be taking a more reasonable approach.
On Tuesday, Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg said on a conference call that he believes that heroin is possibly more dangerous than cannabis, the U.S. News & World Report reports.
“If you want me to say that marijuana’s not dangerous, I’m not going to say that because I think it is,” Rosenberg said. “Do I think it’s as dangerous as heroin? Probably not. I’m not an expert.”
He explained he would rather be in a car accident going 30 mph than 60 mph, but that he’d most rather choose to not be in an accident at all.
The experts have been clear, however, that cannabis should not be classified alongside heroin. One series of studies published in July by the American Medical Association, the nation’s leading medical society, confirmed a slew of medical benefits — which Schedule I drugs must lack — to cannabis. Another study in March estimated that marijuana was 114 times safer than alcohol. Even former Attorney General Eric Holder expressed his support for the need to reevaluate marijuana’s comparative danger to heroin in 2014.
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