Doctors for Cannabis Regulation (DFCR) has been created to urge more doctors to support the legalization and regulation of marijuana. The new group consists of more than 50 doctors, a former surgeon general, and faculty from some of America’s leading medical schools. Their intent is to speak out and call on states and the federal government to legalize marijuana in the interest of public health.
DFCR is pushing for recreational and medical marijuana legalization. The group has argued that prohibition of marijuana does more harm than good, The Washington Post reports. They say that legalization and careful regulation will increase public safety and will combat the black market on its own.
DFCR founder and board member, David L. Nathan said, “You don’t have to be pro-marijuana to be opposed to its prohibition.”
Nathan went on to say, “Doctors should affirmatively support this. If you’re going to make something against the law, the health consequences of that use have to be so bad to make it worth creating criminal consequences. That was never true of marijuana. It was banned in 1937 over the objections of the American Medical Association (AMA).”
During prohibition arguments, the AMA was concerned that prohibiting marijuana use would, “deprive the public of the benefits of a drug that on further research may prove to be of substantial value.”
Nathan argues that marijuana was not well-known among doctors during the 1930s. They were unaware that marijuana and cannabis are the same thing, which doctors had been using to treat a multitude of ailments for years.