Friends of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (FNIDA) are, in fact, not friends to cannabis legalization activists. So it's surprising to see those prominent marijuana opponents criticize the federal government for obstructing cannabis research.
Among the FNIDA's ranks sits some of the nations fiercest cannabis adversaries including Smart Approaches to Marijuana's Kevin Sabet as well as Patrick Kennedy (D), former White House drug czar Barry McCaffrey, former National Institute on Drug Abuse Director Robert DuPont and former Office of National Drug Control Policy Deputy Director Bertha Madras.
Despite their stacked roster of marijuana-opponents, FNIDA does seem to agree with cannabis activists in at least one regard: research.
"At a time when we need as much information as possible about these drugs, we should be lowering regulatory and other barriers to conducting this research," the FNIDA wrote in a recent spending proposal that was submitted to the US government. "The Committee directs NIDA to provide a short report on the barriers to research that result from the classification of drugs and compounds as Schedule 1 substances."
The stance is similar to a proposal submitted to Congress for the 2017 fiscal year as well.
But not all FNIDA members are onboard with reform. Some key players have actually argued against rescheduling in the past. In 2013, Sabet argued that cannabis doesn't need to be rescheduling since its "Schedule 1 status does not prevent a product from being tested and researched for potential medical use.”
So members of theFriends of the National Institute on Drug Abuse might not be on friendly terms anymore in the wake of the spending proposal.