Most Americans Shocked To Learn Cannabis Remains Federally Illegal

H_Ko /
H_Ko /

As states continue to legalize cannabis use both medicinally and recreationally, many Americans are shocked to learn it is still federally illegal as a Schedule I narcotic. With 25 States (and DC) allowing for recreational marijuana and 41 allowing it for medicinal purposes, it’s no wonder Americans are having a hard time keeping things straight.

Now, the Harris Poll has learned that four in ten Americans are current cannabis consumers, and a quarter of the respondents admit to weekly use. With just under 60% “surprised marijuana hasn’t been legalized across the United States yet” and 64% saying “marijuana no longer carries the stigma it used to have,” it’s time for a change.

Libby Rodney, chief strategy officer and resident futurist at The Harris Poll, said that this should be a wake-up call for Americans. “The numbers speak volumes. With 4 in 10 Americans using marijuana, it’s not a trend—it’s a cultural shift. What was once taboo is now mainstream, reflecting changing attitudes and norms. It’s not just about usage; it’s about acceptance,” Rodney continued. It is “signaling a new era in how we perceive and interact with this once controversial substance.”

Conservatives have historically been opposed to the legalization of cannabis, and as the evidence is changing, so have the attitudes. Many veterans are coming home and discovering that the handful of pills the VA shoves down their throats is killing them. Eventually, listening to their old platoon sergeants, they suddenly find themselves trying cannabis and finding a significant improvement over the VA pills.

Changing their opioids and cholesterol medications for a joint and a better diet, they are finding out that it’s the way to go. For many, this is a tough discussion to have with their doctor, and with the changing attitudes on the subject, many are suddenly more open about their use than ever before. If we want to show America’s best and bravest how much we love them, it’s time to help them get the help they deserve legally.