A new movement is brewing in Colorado and it’s long overdue. A group of activists are now attempting to legalize psilocybin mushrooms, another natural plant that has been banned by authoritarian governments across the country and the rest of the world. To date, same as with marijuana, no one has died as a direct result of psilocybin. However, governments and “enforcers” have spent decades locking up peaceful people into cages, effectively ruining the lives they claim are going to be ruined by the mushrooms.
The group of activists , Colorado for Psilocybin, are currently moving to collect enough signatures on petitions to allow the issue to be placed on the ballot. Essentially, they are pushing an initiative to decriminalize psilocybin, do away with felony charges for anyone caught with the mushrooms, and make enforcement the lowest priority for Denver police.
Anyone who is caught with more than two ounces of dried mushrooms or two pounds of “wet” or uncured mushrooms, under CFP’s initiative, could receive a citation, less than $99 for the first offense, increasing in increments of $100 for subsequent offenses though never more than $999 per citation. Thus, the initiative is not full decriminalization but clearly a step in the right direction.
Tyler Williams, one of the leaders of the Psilocybin Decriminalization Initiative, says the marijuana legalization efforts of yesteryear did provide a helpful roadmap when constructing the initiative. Williams is a believer, too. He’s a co-founder of the Denver chapter of the Psychedelic Club at the University of Colorado Boulder.
“I’m a big believer in cognitive liberty, and so whatever people decide to consume I think is up to them,” Williams says. “I think people should be informed about what they are consuming, and they shouldn’t have to be afraid of going to jail for that.”
Williams adds that he feels psilocybin offers mental health, and spiritual and intellectual benefits.
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Kevin Matthews, who helps lead the campaign and helped draft the initiative, says now is the right time for Denver to decriminalize, based on recent studies on the possible medicinal applications of psychedelics.
“I’m proud to say that psilocybin has had a pretty massive impact on my life,” Matthews says. “I struggled with depression for years, I was diagnosed with major depression as a teenager.”
Matthews says he and other advocates want people to use psilocybin responsibly, so that they can have the best experience with it.
“It’s helped me tremendously with my own mental health and on top of that, with creativity, and really being able to just explore different aspects of myself, and really get some healing from the inside out,” he says.
Matthews points to a study by Johns Hopkins University that found psilocybin users dealing with cancer-related stress reported lasting positive effects one year later. A New York University study produced similar results.
Another study conducted at London’s imperial college last year found that it could help treat stubborn cases of depression.
Neuroscientist Michele Ross has joined the campaign as well. “We could apply lessons from cannabis legalization and apply them to psilocybin legalization,” she said. “There’s no reason that both shouldn’t be legalized because psilocybin or magic mushrooms are just as safe as cannabis.”
Ross added that she uses psilocybin and cannabis to treat her own depression and post-traumatic stress.
“I use many different natural substances,” she says,” but psilocybin is one thing that helps me overcome depression in a way that cannabis hasn’t.”
Ross is also the director of Impact Network, a non-profit organization focused on women’s health and marijuana legalization.
The meeting attended on March 5 was a public hearing to determine the details of the phrasing and answer other questions about the initiative. The group’s next step is going to be submitting petition materials for review with the Denver Elections Division. If DED gives final approval, the group will be able to gather signatures in order to get the initiative on the ballot this coming fall.
Although not as massive as the movement to legalize marijuana, the movement to decriminalize psilocybin has been gathering steam over the years as more and more people realize that they have been sold a bill of goods regarding both substances and that the police state their criminalization has provided is not worth the trouble and the stifling of public and private life.
In 2005, an appeals court decision in New Mexico essentially legalized the cultivation of psilocybin. Oregon reduced penalties for possession of many drugs from a felony to a misdemeanor in 2017. California approved a similar move in 2014.
California might soon vote on psilocybin later this year, possibly even beating Colorado to the punch.
Brandon Turbeville – article archive here – is an author out of Florence, South Carolina. He is the author of six books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies,Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 and volume 2, The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria,and The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President. Turbeville has published over 1,000 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.