On July 1, Minnesota a law went into effect that made low amounts of THC in edibles and beverages legal to consume for those 21 and over. However, some Republicans of the senate admitted to the Star Tribune they were surprised. Meaning they did not fully read or understand the bill before passing it.
Despite this accident, Minnesotans will now be able to enjoy Delta-9 THC but these products cannot contain more than five milligrams per serving or 50 milligrams per package, which is very low compared with states that have full legalization. While medical grade marijuana has been legal in Minnesota since 2014, there are 19 states that have fully legalized the use of recreational cannabis.
This new bill may open the doors a little more to the reality of Minnesota becoming the 20th state to legalize recreational use of cannabis. There are many people for it and even the Marijuana Policy Project, which is an organization that advocates for the legalization of cannabis, argues legalizing and regulating cannabis products can help keep them out of the hands of minors, according to the Washington Post.
It is no secret there are many benefits to full legalization of cannabis, the most prominent being it stimulates the economy, creates thousands of jobs, reduces incrimination for marijuana related crimes and enhances the health of the public.
According to Forbes, legalization of cannabis nationwide is the key to fixing the economic crisis the United States is in. During the COVID-19 pandemic, unemployment rates were at an all-time high. Currently in the states that have legalized cannabis, it has created 250,000 full-time jobs and if it were to be legalized nationwide it could potentially create 1.6 million jobs as well as bring in $128.8 billion in tax revenue. Forbes compares this to the overturn of the prohibition and how that created many jobs at the time as well as tax revenue.
Illinois passed recreational use in the beginning of 2020, and even during the very beginning of the pandemic the industry made $37 million even when people were ordered to stay home. Imagine how much Minnesota would make without a pandemic looming over them.
There are many health benefits of cannabis that could help the everyday person that may not need a medical marijuana card. Cannabis can help with chronic pain; overcoming alcohol and drug addictions; mental disorders such as depression, PTSD and anxiety; cancer; multiple sclerosis; and epilepsy. There have been many studies done on each of these that show evidence of cannabis decreasing or completely stopping symptoms of the above listed.
It seems like the next and most obvious move is for Minnesota to finally pass recreational use and when they do, it may be because it was carefully hidden within the bill so the Republicans don’t notice.