Marijuana is a Schedule 1 drug, which puts it in the same legal class as heroin. Marijuana has been shown to be safe from a variety studies and newer studies are just started to find the medical benefits of the drug. However, it is an absolute pain to even study marijuana to search for such effects. It’s also a pain to legally sell marijuana at the state level because of the federal barriers imposed. Basically, marijuana gained its illegal status from fear mongering and pseudoscience and those laws have stuck around because arresting (black) people for marijuana fuels the private prison industry.
John Oliver breaks down how absurd it is that marijuana is still illegal and why we should fight for its decriminalization.