A lot of attention recently has gone towards military veterans access to medical marijuana. But despite the federal government putting up roadblocks, it turns out a lot of former soldiers are still using cannabis.
A recent survey conducted by the American Legion, the largest veterans organization in the United States, found that 22 percent of vets use medical marijuana to treat a mental or physical condition, and 39 percent said they know of someone who uses marijuana for those purposes. Earlier this week we noted that this survey also showed 81 percent of veterans support medical marijuana legalization by the federal government.
The movement to allow veterans access to medical marijuana has really picked up steam in recent months. In September, a study showed that veterans are more likely to use medical marijuana than the general public. Also that month, the National Commander of the American Legion wrote a letter to Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin demanding that he allow greater scientific research into the study of medicinal cannabis. Then just a few weeks ago, a handful of Democratic congresspeople also called on Shulkin to put greater emphasis into researching how marijuana can help veterans.
The new Trump administration is being put under a lot of pressure to finally address marijuana legalization. From Congress defunding Attorney General Jeff Sessions' efforts to crack down on legal states to the numerous calls to allow veterans use of marijuana, at some point in the next four years Republicans will have to decide which side of the cannabis debate they want to be on.
And if they truly are the party that honors soldiers and veterans, then they should probably listen to the American Legion.