There are those within Kentucky that are pushing to join 29 other states in legalizing medical marijuana. The major problem, according to House Concurrent Resolution 34, is that the decision to legalize medical marijuana in those states has not been based on “a careful scientific weighing of the benefits and risks of the use of marijuana for certain health purposes.”
Rep. Danny Bentley, a professor of Pharmacology, sponsored HCR 34 to “expedite research on the safety and effectiveness of the use of marijuana’s compounds for certain health purposes.” Bentley cautioned his fellow lawmakers against adopting drug policy without thorough study, citing several examples of serious consequences in history. “When we have not had the most careful study, we have ended up with unintended consequences,” he said. Dr. Bentley also explained that without comprehensive research and FDA approval, legislators cannot make a responsible decision.
HCR 34 passed the Kentucky House 73-5 on Jan. 24, 2018. It now proceeds to the Kentucky Senate, where it must be passed before being sent to Gov. Bevin’s desk. If it completes that process, copies of HCR 34 will be sent to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, National Institute on Drug Abuse, and the Drug Enforcement Administration.