Cannabis at the Crossroads: A Transdisciplinary Analysis and Policy Prescription

64 Pages Posted: 12 Mar 2020 Last revised: 16 Jun 2021

See all articles by Lawrence J. Trautman

Lawrence J. Trautman

Prairie View A&M University - College of Business; Texas A&M University School of Law (By Courtesy)

Paul R Seaborn

McIntire School of Commerce, University of Virginia

Adam J. Sulkowski

Babson College

Donald Mayer

University of Denver

Robert T. Luttrell

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: February 19, 2020

Abstract

Cannabis has returned to the mainstream in recent years after an interlude of legal prohibition and partial societal stigmatization. 2019 U.S. state-legal cannabis sales have been estimated at 13.6 billion dollars with predictions for sales to near 30 billion by 2025. The global market for cannabis products - including a range of products produced from non-psychoactive hemp - could approach hundreds of billions of dollars annually. At the same time, the legal cannabis industry faces significant challenges in the United States; legalization has been uneven, with disparities among states, and federal law continues to impose obstacles to predictability in the nationwide market for cannabis.

Conflicts between U.S. federal and state laws regarding cannabis are numerous. Federal law treats most forms of cannabis as illegal, yet 97.7 percent of the U.S. population –– located in 47 states, the District of Columbia, and 4 U.S. territories –– are living in jurisdictions where medical or recreational use of cannabis, including cannabidiol (“CBD”) oil, is now legal.

This Article takes a transdisciplinary approach and proceeds in eight parts. First, we explore the history of cannabis including its earliest uses, noting periodic prohibitions. Second, we look at applicable current U.S. federal statutes, both criminal and non-criminal. Third, we consider the legalization approaches and experiences in the states. Fourth, we look at the Canadian experience including national recreational market legalization in 2018. Fifth, we examine the ethical issues around recreational and medical marijuana use. Sixth, we describe the future outlook for cannabis businesses in terms of both market potential and regulation. Seventh, we describe Congressional proposals to change federal laws on cannabis. Eighth, we then draw upon these various perspectives to arrive at a policy prescription. And last, we conclude.

Keywords: business, cannabis, CBD, controlled substance, criminal justice, decriminalization, drug policy, entrepreneurship, ethics, FDA, federalism, hemp, legalization, legislation, localism, marihuana, marijuana, medical marijuana, policy, preemption, prohibition, regulation

Suggested Citation

Trautman, Lawrence J. and Seaborn, Paul R and Sulkowski, Adam J. and Mayer, Donald and Luttrell, Robert T., Cannabis at the Crossroads: A Transdisciplinary Analysis and Policy Prescription (February 19, 2020). 45 Oklahoma City University Law Review, 125 (2021), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3541229 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3541229

Lawrence J. Trautman (Contact Author)

Prairie View A&M University - College of Business ( email )

Prairie View, TX
United States

Texas A&M University School of Law (By Courtesy) ( email )

1515 Commerce St.
Fort Worth, TX 76102
United States

Paul R Seaborn

McIntire School of Commerce, University of Virginia ( email )

P.O. Box 400173
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4173
United States

Adam J. Sulkowski

Babson College ( email )

231 Forest St.
Babson Park, MA 02457-0310
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.babson.edu/Academics/faculty/profiles/Pages/sulkowski-adam.aspx

Donald Mayer

University of Denver ( email )

2201 S. Gaylord St
Denver, CO 80208-2685
United States

Robert T. Luttrell

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Do you want regular updates from SSRN on Twitter?

Paper statistics

Downloads
344
Abstract Views
1,387
rank
120,534
PlumX Metrics