This just in from the NYT:
People who use marijuana for medical purposes and those who distribute it should not face federal prosecution, provided they act according to state law, the Justice Department said on Monday in a directive with political and legal implications.
And so Obama has held up his end of the bargain. Earlier, he said that he would make sure medicinal marijuana will not be pursued by the DEA and left towards state jurisdiction. In an almost ironic parallel, Obama is exercising political rhetoric of state’s rights, one that Reagan championed during his campaign platform regarding civil rights — which devastated the Democrats chances for presidential office for several terms. Since Obama is African American, it is pretty much a smack in the face. In addition to attempts to legalize industrial hemp in KY, (here) and protests to keep the DEA off of farmers backs for legal industrial hemp, (here) this marks an iconic period for the legitimacy of marijuana. Let’s see how long it will last.
UPDATE (10/20): Slate weighs in stating “States could take the new policy as a tacit nod from Uncle Sam to go ahead and allow medical marijuana back home.”