What Is HR 420? Have you heard about HR 420? This bill is also called Regulate Marijuana As Alcohol Act. As you can imagine, the bill's goal normal
What Is HR 420?
Have you heard about HR 420? This bill is also called Regulate Marijuana As Alcohol Act. As you can imagine, the bill’s goal normalizes and legalizes cannabis use. It’s pretty exciting to see something like this come up. It is a positive step to even see it introduced. Merely seeing this conversation at a Federal level is a step toward lifting the veil of demonization from this harmless plant.
What Is HR 420: What Is A Bill?
A bill is proposed legislation created for consideration by Congress. Once this documentation is affirmed by Congress, it must be approved by the executive branch (in this case, the President). Thereafter, it becomes law and is called a statute or legislation.
What Is HR 420: Explaining HR 420
What’s going on with this bill beyond its clever name? Let’s look closely.
In early January, Representative Earl Blumenauer (D Or) introduced the bill which is still in its infancy. If the bill passes, marijuana leaves the Controlled Substances Act’s scheduling. It doesn’t provide for total legalization but does establish a framework for each state to follow in order to decriminalize or legalize use as they see fit.
What Is HR 420: Issues HR 420 Addresses
The main problem legalization currently faces is that even when states legalize, the federal government still views cannabis criminally. This bill allows states to proceed with greater autonomy. Because the bill proposes treating cannabis and alcohol the same way, it is a clear path to legalization.
What Is HR 420: Jurisdictional Transfer
One of the bill’s main points is to transfer jurisdiction from the Attorney General to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, now known as the ATF. This agency would be renamed to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, Marijuana, and Explosives.
Additionally, the bill allows the Food and Drug Administration to exercise authority over marijuana as it does alcohol. Furthermore, the Treasury Secretary would hold regulatory power over cannabis advertising.
What Is HR 420: The Bureau of ATF & FDA
Before we can understand the significance of the last part of the bill we discussed, we must understand what the ATF and FDA do for the American population.
According to the ATF’s website:
ATF is a law enforcement agency in the United States’ Department of Justice that protects our communities from violent criminals, criminal organizations, the illegal use and trafficking of firearms, the illegal use and storage of explosives, acts of arson and bombings, acts of terrorism, and the illegal diversion of alcohol and tobacco products. We partner with communities, industries, law enforcement, and public safety agencies to safeguard the public we serve through information sharing, training, research, and use of technology.
The FDA, on the other hand, regulates claims of drug efficacy for both humans and pets. It also regulates the safety of biological products, medical devices and products that product radiation. Finally, the FDA governs the safety of the US food supply.
Its main goal is to protect the public health. It does this by regulating unsubstantiated claims. The FDA doesn’t allow companies to market a product for illnesses unless research proves its effectiveness. It also protects the US population from unsafe food and devices.