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Facebook cracks down on medical marijuana dispensaries pages hosted on the social network website. Several reports of authorized medical marijuana dispensaries revealed that Facebook already closed pages of businesses in several states.
New Jersey, Washington and Maine medical marijuana dispensaries have seen some business pages removed. Upon closure, Facebook notified that the content on these business pages was not in line with community standards.
While this is a great disservice to patients who rely on the Facebook pages for timely updates and news, Facebook seems to be aligning its community standards to federal laws rather than taking into consideration the specifics of the states where these medical marijuana dispensaries are located.
Both owners of the businesses and patients relying on these centers for their medication have been enraged by Facebook’s stand. Facebook’s community standards clearly specify that the sale or purchase of drugs is clearly prohibited via the social network. However, a clear reference to unauthorized dealers is written black on white.
From this perspective, medical marijuana dispensaries aren’t unauthorized dealers. Far from promoting drug use or drug abuse, these businesses are already under tough regulations at state level. A limited and well-supervised number of patients may benefit from their services.
As Facebook cracks down on medical marijuana dispensaries pages, one owner of the Breakwater Wellness and Treatment Center stated that the move is unfair. In addition, it is not in the benefit of patients who are thus left without any coherent source of information.
Medical marijuana continues to be a conundrum for federal and state lawmakers and law enforcement agencies. 23 states have approved and legalized selling marijuana or marijuana-derived products for medical purposes. At the federal level, federal agents are prohibited to raid authorized dealers of marijuana, namely medical marijuana dispensaries.
However, individual states still have the liberty to act according to whatever laws they have in place. At the federal level, marijuana is still classified as a Schedule I substance not be used in medical application. At state level, marijuana is approved for medical applications.
Against this background, it’s possible that Facebook’s stand falls in line with federal law, disregarding the authority of the states where the medical marijuana businesses are located. As Facebook cracks down on medical marijuana dispensaries pages, it remains unclear how many pages hosted on the social network have been taken down.
Photo Credits: Flickr