The History of Marijuana in South Dakota

South Dakota has a history with marijuana that dates back to 1933 when the state first banned all forms of the drug. During this time, the United States began introducing numerous marijuana prohibition laws because fear of the psychotic effects of the drug continued to increase as more Mexicans migrated to the country. South Dakota joined other states in banning marijuana after hearing these stories of the drug’s dangerous effects. There wasn’t much public discussion in the state regarding the drug again until South Dakota introduced another cannabis legislation in 1977.

In 1977, the state decriminalized up to a pound of marijuana during the short-lived wave of decriminalization laws across the United States. This cannabis law didn’t last long in South Dakota though because the decision was almost immediately repealed. The state didn’t introduce another marijuana reform legislation until 2006, when the South Dakota Medical Marijuana Initiative was defeated. If the law had passed, it would have provided patients, including minors, with qualifying conditions to be certified to grow, possess, and use for medical purposes. Now, the Senate just passed legislation removing CBD from the definition of marijuana, making it legal to use with FDA approval. So South Dakota is certainly moving forward with marijuana reform.

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The relationship between marijuana use and schizophrenia has been in the news lately after Malcolm Gladwell wrote in The New Yorker that cannabis can lead to the mental illness. But that's not really what science is saying about the issue. The New York Times published a lengthy article examining the idea of marijuana use and schizophrenia.

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