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Is Medical Marijuana about to be legalized in South Carolina?

   Let’s face it, whether or not you follow politics on a regular basis, it is common knowledge that some people are very passionate about marijuana and others just cannot stand it! No matter your personal opinion on the matter, medical marijuana is a topic that has and will remain in current political debate for the foreseeable future. Late Wednesday night, a bill passed through the South Carolina Senate that would legalize marijuana for specific medical and health issues. This is a big step for South Carolina in terms of progressivism within the health field. Although the concept of medical marijuana has been circulating the South Carolina House of Representatives and Senate for nearly seven years now, this is the most progress it has made yet.

         Before we get into the details of the bill, let’s talk about where the public stands on the legalization of marijuana whether it be for medicinal or recreational purposes. According to a study done in April of 2021, an overwhelming number of Americans actually support the legalization of cannabis in both forms. “As more states, including Virginia and New York, continue to legalize marijuana, an overwhelming share of U.S. adults (91%) say either that marijuana should be legal for medical and recreational use (60%) or that it should be legal for medical use only (31%).” Pew Researchers found that less than 1 in 10 Americans believe that marijuana should be completely illegal in all forms. The bill passing the South Carolina legislature has received copious amounts of resistance from quite a few members of both the House and the Senate yet was able to pass through both in a span of 3 weeks. The next step for our South Carolinian bill is a trip back to the House of Representatives for the approval of the amendments that were made.

         Let’s take a look at the specifics of the bill. This round, the bill was introduced by Tom Davis who is a Representative from Beaufort South Carolina. His argument to get the bill to this point was that it is the most conservative medical marijuana bill to date within the country. If this bill fully passes, it will not legalize marijuana in a smoking form; it would only pass it in the form of oil, creams, patches, gummies, edibles, etc. It will also be a considerably restrictive bill in terms of who qualifies for the prescription. There are just over 10 chronic conditions that have been approved within the bill to receive it, some of these include cancer, glaucoma, MS, PTSD, and few others. As of right now, South Carolina would be the 38th state to pass a bill regarding medical marijuana. The bill has been argued in the Senate for 3 weeks now and will make its way back to the House to complete its authorization. To follow along with the progression of the bill go to: https://www.scstatehouse.gov/index.php

Happy Weed Week!

Evie Robinson is a Politics & International Affairs and Middle East & Islamic Studies double major on the Pre-law track with the intention to practice immigration law in her adult life. Her favorite topics to write about include politics, historical events, current events and women's sexual health. She loves reading the news, taking walks around the Furman lake, and spending time with her roommates. She plans on living in a large city one day to work at a prominent practice and drink an espresso martini with dinner each night.
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