Ex-Jet Marvin Washington Says DEA Can’t Sack Pot Movement


Marvin Washington isn’t worried about the NFL’s marijuana movement, even though the Drug Enforcement Administration recently declined to reclassify cannabis to make it easier for researchers to study pot’s potential medical benefits.

The former Jets defensive end says the DEA will face much greater pressure to change marijuana’s status after the November general election, when voters in California, Massachusetts, Maine, Nevada and Arizona will vote on measures to legalize weed.

“I wasn’t surprised by the DEA decision because I didn’t think they would do anything until after the election,” Washington said Tuesday. “The more states that legalize it, the more political pressure grows.”

The DEA announced earlier this month that marijuana will remain a Schedule I controlled substance, which means the agency believes it has no accepted medical uses. But Washington said he is more interested in the agency’s decision to loosen restrictions on the cultivation of marijuana for research purposes.

The University of Mississippi, for many years the sole legal distributor of cannabis for scientific purposes, reputedly grows lousy weed in an era where consumers have access to rising THC levels and hundreds of strains.

Washington is part of a budding movement led by former NFL players who are calling on the league and its union to embrace marijuana as an alternative to addictive painkillers. The NFL retirees also want the NFL to fund research that will examine cannabis’ potential to prevent or treat concussions and chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the brain disease linked to the suicides of Junior Seau and Dave Duerson. Washington, 50, has been involved in the cannabis industry for several years and is currently developing a line of edibles, topical creams and vaporizing products. He was also one of the first former NFL players to call for the NFL to take the lead on marijuana research. Cannabis has already been proven effective in managing pain and inflammation as well as in treating epilepsy, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.

Washington said DEA officials may have been reluctant to change cannabis’ classification before the Food and Drug Administration decides if it will approve a marijuana-based pharmaceutical drug that is being developed by the British company GW Pharmaceuticals that has shown promise in treating a rare form of epilepsy in children.

“I am not disappointed in the DEA decision at all,” Washington said. “I like the energy of this movement. I think if Hillary (Clinton) wins in a landslide, the ballot measures could pass in all of those states. It is no longer a matter of if, it is a matter of when,” he said.

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Full Article: Ex-Jet Marvin Washington Says DEA Can’t Sack Pot Movement
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