The Powers That Be have recently been waking up to just how totally fucking wrongly they've treated matters of marijuana in the past. Multiple states, including proven leaders on the issue like California and Oregon, have fully legalized this savory goodness for recreational use. Others, like the home state of recently canned attorney general Jeff Sessions, still treat cannabis like it's goddamn heroin.
Friday, however, a potential global shift by way of the World Health Organization (WHO) signaled just how much has changed regarding matters of marijuana. WHO is calling for whole-plant marijuana and cannabis resin to be removed from the extremely restrictive international Schedule IV category it landed on back in 1961, Forbes reports. Additionally, WHO is calling for THC and related isomers to be removed from a 1971 drug treaty and placed in the Schedule I category from the aforementioned 1961 convention.
To be clear, these categories are not the same as (and potential changes would have no direct bearings on) the U.S. government's own classifications. By the current U.S. filing of marijuana under its own Schedule I category, our government is still sending the message that it considers weed to be on par with other Schedule I substances including heroin and peyote.
As the Forbes report explains in greater detail, these recommended shufflings from United Nations health experts—if formally adopted—would be the equivalent of global powers conceding that their relationships with cannabis have been fraught with mischaracterizations. Put another way, the changes' adoption would likely embolden the nation-by-nation, state-by-state pushes for greater acceptance of marijuana as a substance that actually boasts many benefits, like making all of the bullshit going on every single day semi-bearable.