The United States has a long, storied history with marijuana. Our forefathers knew the benefits of smoking cannabis, and it was popularly used throughout the country’s inception. However, it wasn’t until the late 1800s and early 1900s that the plant began to gain its notoriety.
In 1937, the government passed the Marihuana Tax Act, which criminalized the use of cannabis in nonmedical contexts. Around that time, 23 states outlawed the plant, and by 1970, it was categorized as a Schedule I drug, which grouped it with the likes of heroin, LSD, and other highly dangerous controlled substances.
At this point, it was clear that the law no longer viewed marijuana as a plant that had any redeeming qualities, let alone medicinal properties.
It has taken nearly 100 years, but finally, marijuana’s taboo identity in American culture is being turned on its head. The prohibition era is all but dead, as 25 states have medical marijuana (MMJ) programs in place. And the DEA is rumored to be considering a rescheduling of the plant so it can be legally prescribed in all 50 states.
A growing number of politicians, doctors, and members of the general public support the widespread proliferation of medical marijuana, and once that happens, we’ll surely see some big changes across the medical world.