Not that there isn't already some amateur cannabis research going on in Arizona college dorm rooms and student houses, but as of today formal cannabis research is now allowed at universities across the Grand Canyon state.
Gov. Jan Brewer today gave her signature to a law allowing cannabis research at Arizona universities. Schools can now research cannabis so long as the university receives federal permission from the DEA.
As we reported last month, the bill addresses a technicality left over from 2012 legislation banning marijuana from all college campuses. The intent was the continued criminalization and punishment on campus of the students who chose to use cannabis, but the way it was written prevented the researchers from conducting studies because they technically couldn't possesses it on campus.
That ban includes medical marijuana patients, but otherwise is largely redundant considering marijuana possession is already illegal in Arizona. The whole situation is pretty asinine when you think about it, and the fact that it required legislative time action and a governor's signature to fix is ridiculous as well.
Before the 2012 campus cannabis ban, University of Arizona researchers had proposals approved by the federal government to study cannabis as a therapy for post-traumatic stress disorder. Researcher Sue Sisley Sisley, who headed the PTSD program, said they plan to continue where they left off.
"We're going to be looking at combat veterans who have treatment-resistant PTSD. So, that means they failed medication and psychotherapy. And we're going to be examining five different dosages of both smoke and vaporized marijuana," she told Arizona Public Radio this week. "I think that's the real purpose of a public university ... to be able to examine subjects that are hard or controversial or complex in an environment that isn't plagued by politics."