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Before the initiative takes effect, however, lawmakers will have a 30-day Congressional review period to reconsider, opening the possibility the measure will be blocked, as was the fate of a 2014 legalization proposal in which officials were ultimately barred from using state funds to create a system to tax and regulate cannabis. Unlike in other US states, local laws in DC can be overturned by Congress, who has oversight over them.
Denver, Colorado became the first locality in the US to decriminalize mushrooms last year, though the substance remains a Schedule I drug under federal law, which remains in force regardless of any local or state-level efforts to reduce or abolish penalties.
President Richard Nixon declared a war on drugs in 1971, calling drug abuse “America’s public enemy number one” and citing addiction rates of US troops returning from the Vietnam War. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) was created in 1973. Since then, the drug war has seen covert and overt US interventions in places ranging from Mexico to Colombia, including the 1989 invasion of Panama. In the US, the drug war translated into skyrocketing incarceration rates.
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