California Introduces Bill to Decriminalize Hallucinogens

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In a strong challenge to the war on drugs, California state senator Scott Weiner, a Democrat, has introduced a bill that would decriminalize psychedelics in the state, reports The Guardian.  Weiner hopes that by following the examples of Oakland, Santa Cruz, and Washington D.C., all of which have already decriminalized psychedelics, California will move closer to decriminalizing the use and possession of all drugs. The bill would decriminalize possession and personal use of psilocybin, psilocyn, MDMA, LSD, ketamine, DMT, mescaline and ibogaine – all drugs that can be used for medical treatment.

The bill would also expunge criminal records for people convicted of possession or personal use of these substances. It would create a task force to recommend which regulatory body would oversee personal and therapeutic use of these substances for mental health treatment. In the past, the biggest opponents to decriminalization have been law enforcement, who point to public safety concerns, as well as the private rehabilitation industry. Wiener is relying on testimony from veterans – the bill is sponsored by two groups who help them with PTSD – and therapists who support the therapeutic use of psychedelics to break down prejudices about psychedelics users.

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