Our Latest Updates – Archive

Updated: Medical Marijuana Votes and Polls
9/29/2022 -

Explore nationwide and state-level polls on medical marijuana support and disapproval from 2000 through 2022.

Mississippi 37th State to Legalize Medical Marijuana
2/3/2022 -

Governor Tate Reeves signed legislation on Feb. 2, 2022, after both the Senate and House passed the bill on Jan. 26. The law is expected to go into effect later in 2022.

New Study: Cannabis Likely Originated in Northwest China
7/19/2021 -

A study published in Science Advances traced the origins of Cannabis sativa to northwest China and concluded that the plant likely emerged by Neolithic times (10,000-3,000 BC). The study also corroborates the widely-agreed upon conclusion that Cannabis indica is not a separate species from Cannabis sativa.

DEA to Allow More Domestic Sources for Cannabis Research
6/1/2021 -

The DEA stated that it would approve more growers pending final approval. The move will result in not only more marijuana for study, but more varieties of the plant that more closely approximate what people in the real world are using in legal states.

Alabama Legalizes Medical Marijuana
5/18/2021 -

Republican Governor Kay Ivey signed the legislation May 17, 2021, making it the 37th state to legalize medical marijuana.

Mississippi Medical Marijuana Effort Thwarted by Outdated Constitutional Requirement
5/17/2021 -

The state constitution requires supporters to collect signatures in five congressional districts. Mississippi currently only has four congressional districts, having lost one in the 2000 Census count.

Virginia’s Medical Marijuana Program to Allow Botanicals
3/22/2021 -

Governor Ralph Northam signed HB 2218 and SB 1333, which will legalize cannabis botanicals in the medical marijuana program on July 1, 2021

United Nations Commission Reclassifies Medical Marijuana
12/2/2020 -

27 of 53 member states, including the United States voted to remove medical marijuana from Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, which includes opioids like heroin.

Mississippi and South Dakota Voters Legalize Medical Marijuana
11/10/2020 -

South Dakota voters also legalized recreational marijuana, the first state to legalize both simultaneously.

Virginia Legalizes CBD
4/14/2020 -

On Apr. 6, 2020, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signed SB 1015 into law. The law goes into effect on July 1, 2020 and will legalize CBD and THC-A medical cannabis products, protecting patients from arrest and prosecution for possession.

Medical Marijuana Sales Increase during COVID-19 Stay-at-Home Orders
3/30/2020 -

As more stay-at-home orders are issued during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, medical marijuana dispensaries have been labeled “essential” businesses, meaning they can remain open under certain guidelines while other businesses such as bookstores must close their doors to customers.

Nine in Ten Kentucky Adults Support Medical Marijuana
2/7/2020 -

A Feb. 2020 poll by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky found that 90% of adults surveyed favor allowing the use of marijuana for medical purposes with a doctor’s recommendation.

Missouri Medical Marijuana Patients Authorized to Possess Marijuana
1/31/2020 -

The Missouri DHSS clarified in a letter this week that medical marijuana card holders are legally allowed to possess and use medical marijuana even though licensed dispensaries have not opened yet.

What Is Cannabidiol (CBD)?
1/10/2020 -

CBD can now be found in drinks, pet products, gummy bears, cosmetics, and more. With the explosion of CBD’s popularity, you might be wondering what exactly this marijuana-related compound is. See how the experts explain the science behind the trend.

US Government Allocates $3M for Research on CBD and Pain
9/20/2019 -

The National Institutes of Health awarded nine research grants to investigate the potential role of cannabinoids such as CBD in pain management.

NEW ProCon.org Website! – 2020 Presidential Election: The Candidates and Where They Stand on the Issues
8/29/2019 -

Learn about the presidential candidates’ views on important issues, compare them with a side-by-side chart, find your best match with a fun quiz, track their finances, and so much more on our 2020 Presidential Election website. The New York Times called our previous presidential election site “The most comprehensive tool for researching the candidate’s stance on issues.” Check back monthly for expanded issue coverage.

Illinois Medical Marijuana Program Made Permanent
8/13/2019 -

On Aug. 12, 2019, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a bill making the state’s medical marijuana program permanent, whereas before it had been set to expire in 2020. The new law added 11 qualifying conditions for which a person may apply to use medical marijuana.

17 States with Legal Cannabidiol (CBD)
7/12/2019 -

The 17 states that have not legalized medical marijuana have all passed laws allowing the use of cannabidiol (CBD) extract, usually in oil form and with limited amounts of THC.

Texas Expands CBD Program
6/17/2019 -

Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill on June 14, 2019 that adds more medical conditions to the list of patients allowed to obtain cannabidiol containing up to .5% THC from a state-licensed dispensary.

Is Marijuana an Effective Treatment for Reducing Nausea and Vomiting from Chemotherapy?
4/10/2019 -

Read pros and cons from the Minnesota Department of Public Health (pro), the FDA (con), the Institute of Medicine (pro), the American Medical Association (con), and more.

Is Marijuana an Effective Alternative to Opioid Treatment?
2/25/2019 -

Prescription opioid deaths were five times higher in 2017 than in 1999, according to the CDC. Explore the pros and cons of using medical marijuana as an alternative to opioids, with quotes from orthopedic surgeon Frank D’Ambrosio (pro), Stanford University School of Medicine professor Keith Humphreys (con), former Drug Policy Alliance Manager of Marijuana Law and Policy Amanda Reiman (pro), Medical Director at Caron Treatment Centers Joseph Garbely (con), and more.

New ProCon.org Website! – Should Birth Control Pills Be Available Over-the-Counter?
2/21/2019 -

Our new topic explores the pros and cons in the debate over making birth control pills available over-the-counter (OTC). 9.1 million women (12.6% of contraceptive users) use birth control pills, which are the second-most commonly used method of contraception in the United States. Proponents say making the birth control pill available over-the-counter would lower teen pregnancy rates, provide contraceptive access to medically underserved women, and ease access to a health-improving drug with decades of safe use. Opponents say making the Pill over-the-counter would raise the cost of contraception for women, pose a danger to teens’ and women’s health by removing the doctor’s visit requirement, and limit what options are made available.

Our new website presents the top pro & con arguments and quotes, a history of the debate, a video gallery, the prescription status of birth control pills around the world, and a list of drugs switched from prescription to OTC status.

Should Marijuana Be a Medical Option?
1/23/2019 -

Examine both sides of the debate on medical cannabis with new quotes from dispensary owner Chanda Macias (pro) and the Cleveland Clinic (con), along with insights from doctors, pharmacists, politicians, and more, including Dr. Sanjay Gupta (pro) and the FDA (con).

Researcher Wanted at Educational Nonprofit ProCon.org
1/17/2019 -

ProCon.org, a Los Angeles-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity,
seeks an in-house Researcher (full-time with benefits or part-time
without benefits) to develop content for websites devoted to a
nonpartisan in-depth presentation of 70+ controversial issues. Three
items are required for application, as specified in the job notice.

President Trump Signs Bill Legalizing Industrial Hemp
12/27/2018 -

On Dec. 20, 2018, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (aka Farm Bill) removed hemp containing less than 0.3% THC from the Controlled Substances Act.

33 Legal Medical Marijuana States and DC
11/7/2018 -

Missouri and Utah joined the list of states with legal medical marijuana after the success of ballot measures in the Nov. 6, 2018 election.

31 Legal Medical Marijuana States and DC
9/7/2018 -

Cannabis fees, possession limits, approved conditions, registration requirements, and other important information for each legal state from Alaska to West Virginia.

50 Lesson Plan Ideas Using ProCon.org
7/16/2018 -

We’re excited to announce 50 free lesson plan ideas for educators! Visit our Teachers’ Corner for inspiration, including lessons plans about distinguishing fact from opinion, how to write a “call-to-action” letter, and content from our partner Credo Reference.

FDA Approves Its First Marijuana-Based Drug
6/29/2018 -

On June 25,
the FDA announced approval of Epidiolex, a CBD medicine for the
treatment of two rare and serious forms of epilepsy.

Oklahoma Becomes 30th US State to Legalize Medical Marijuana
6/29/2018 -

57% of voters approved a ballot question legalizing medical
marijuana in the June 26, 2018 election. Learn more on our
historical timeline of marijuana as medicine from 2900 BC to

Oklahoma Becomes 30th Legal Medical Marijuana State
6/27/2018 -

57% of voters in the June 26 election approved Question 788 to legalize medical cannabis in Oklahoma, which is now the first legal state that doesn’t limit medical use to a specific list of approved conditions. Learn more about medical marijuana state laws.

How Many Legal Medical Marijuana Patients Are There in the United States?
5/21/2018 -

2.1 MILLION. Maine has the highest per capita medical marijuana patient population (38.42 per 1,000 people) with Michigan in second (27.06 patients per 1,000 people), and New Mexico in third (25.03 patients per 1,000) – all well above the national average of 10.79 per 1,000 people.

How Addictive Is Marijuana?
4/12/2018 -

Expert opinions on the addictiveness of cannabis range from less addictive than caffeine to “highly addicting.” Read quotes and find estimates of marijuana dependence in our updated question.

Is Medical Marijuana an Effective Treatment for Severe / Chronic Pain?
4/5/2018 -

Explore the debate over using marijuana to treat pain with quotes from
experts such as pain-management physician Dr. Pedro Oliveros (pro),
Director of the University of Michigan Chronic Pain and Fatigue Research
Center Dr. Daniel Clauw (con), the National Academies of Sciences,
Engineering, and Medicine (pro), the US Food and Drug Administration
(con), and more.

Should Marijuana Be a Medical Option?
3/29/2018 -

Read quotes from experts such as Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Chief Medical Correspondent for CNN (now pro), former Mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg (con), pain-management physician Pedro Oliveros (pro), registered nurse Mary Haag (con), and more than 50 others.

10 US Surgeons General and Their Views on Medical Marijuana
3/9/2018 -

– What do the top medical professionals in the federal government say about medical marijuana? Three former Surgeons General are pro (Satcher, Elders, and Steinfeld), one is con (Koop), and six, including current Surgeon General Jerome Adams, are neither pro nor con. You can read all their position statements in one handy guide.

US Attorney General Ends Obama-Era Marijuana Guidelines
1/4/2018 -

Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded the policy guidelines issued by President
Obama’s Justice Department regarding the enforcement of marijuana laws
in states where marijuana is legal.

States with Pending Medical Marijuana Legislation
8/3/2017 -

Bills to legalize medical marijuana failed to pass in 13 states so far this year, but North Carolina and Wisconsin still have legislation under consideration.

18 States with Laws Specifically about Legal Cannabidiol (CBD)
7/26/2017 -

Several US states have enacted laws about CBD, a non-psychoactive ingredient found in marijuana, mainly related to the treatment of epilepsy but occasionally for other conditions as well.

Should Marijuana Be Reclassified as a Schedule II or III Drug?
7/11/2017 -

Read pro and con arguments for moving marijuana out of Schedule I from experts such as the President and CEO of Mission Health Dr. Ronald Paulus (pro), Harvard Medical School professor Dr. Bertha Madras (con), the American College of Physicians (pro) and the US Food and Drug Administration (con).

Mexico Legalizes Medical Marijuana
6/23/2017 -

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto signed a decree on June 19, 2017 that calls on the Ministry of Health to implement medical marijuana.

West Virginia Becomes 29th US State to Legalize Medical Marijuana
4/21/2017 -

West Virginia Governor Jim Justice (D) signed SB 386 into law on Apr. 19, 2017, allowing the use of non-smoked medical marijuana for conditions to be approved by the newly created West Virginia Medical Cannabis Commission.

13 States with Pending Legislation to Legalize Medical Marijuana
4/17/2017 -

– Thirteen US states, including several in the South, are currently considering legislation that would legalize medical marijuana, while bills in Kansas, Mississippi, and Virginia have failed this year.