Drug Enforcement Administration chief Chuck Rosenberg said in an interview with CBS Wednesday that medical marijuana is “a joke” because the drug is “bad and dangerous.”
“What really bothers me is the notion that marijuana is also medicinal — because it’s not,” Rosenberg told CBS reporters. “We can have an intellectually honest debate about whether we should legalize something that is bad and dangerous, but don’t call it medicine — that is a joke.”
Rosenberg’s comments accompany the 2015 DEA National Drug Threat Assessment Summary and the filing of a Senate bill by 2016 presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, which would end the federal ban on marijuana. (RELATED: Bernie Sanders Just Introduced A Major Marijuana Reform Bill In The Senate)
The NDTAS report says “marijuana concentrates, with potency levels far exceeding those of leaf marijuana, pose an issue of growing concern,” reports Newsweek.
Rosenberg added that “there are pieces of marijuana—extracts or constituents or component parts—that have great [medicinal] promise.… But if you talk about smoking the leaf of marijuana—which is what people are talking about when they talk about medicinal marijuana—it has never been shown to be safe or effective as a medicine.”
Rosenberg made headlines last August when he agreed that heroin is more dangerous than marijuana, partially fulfilling marijuana supporters’ hopes that he would take a more reasonable approach to the legalization of the drug than his predecessors. (RELATED: DEA Chief Finally Says It: Heroin More Dangerous Than Marijuana)
With his recent comments, however, social media users voiced criticism of Rosenberg:
Why is Chuck Rosenberg the head of the DEA when he has absolutely zero medicinal knowledge? That's like making a giraffe head of the UN.
— Mr. Penguin (@Eugene_T_Erlikh) November 5, 2015
— Marij A. Wanna (@MarijAWanna) November 5, 2015