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Scott Wiener
Senator Scott Wiener. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for California Globe)

Psychedelic Drugs Such As LSD, Mescaline May Be Legalized In New Bill

‘The sheer stupidity of this bill is overwhelming’

By Evan Symon, February 18, 2021 7:00 pm

A new bill introduced Wednesday in the State Senate would legalize several psychedelic drugs such as LSD and psilocybin “magic” mushrooms.

Senate Bill 519, authored by Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco), would make psilocybin (magic mushrooms), dimethyltryptamine (psychedelic drug DMT), ibogaine (psychedelic substance), mescaline (psychedelic hallucinogen), lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), ketamine (“dissociative anesthetic”), and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, ecstasy, molly,) legal to possess for personal use and social sharing. SB 519 would also set strict limits on who can use the drugs, penalizing those who are under the age of 21 for using drugs, as well as possessing the drugs on school property.

Those with prior criminal offenses for possession and use would have also have their records expunger under the bill, with the California Department of Public Health to come up with regulations and therapeutic uses of the legalized psychedelics by 2024.

According to Senator Wiener’s office, the bill will not follow the cannabis model to form a retail trade of the drugs. Instead, Senator Wiener wrote SB 519 as a way to end the mass incarceration that occurred during the war on drugs, as well as to increase scientific and medical testing to help those suffering from mental health conditions such as PTSD and depression.

Assemblyman Evan Low. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for California Globe)

“Policy should be based on science and common sense, not fear and stigma,” Senator Wiener said in a press release. “The War on Drugs and mass incarceration are destructive and failed policies, and we must end them. Moreover, given the severity of our mental health crisis, we shouldn’t be criminalizing people for using drugs that have shown significant promise in treating mental health conditions.”

Other legislative supporters of the bill gave similar reasons for legalization, with many emphasizing the effects that criminalization of psychedelics have had on minority communities.

“This bill is part of a larger push to end the failed War on Drugs, which has disproportionately harmed underserved communities of color,” added Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell). “Our bill helps to lead us on a path to decriminalizing substance abuse so we can focus on providing addiction treatment instead of paying for jail cells and ignoring the larger problem.”

Opposition quickly forms against SB 519

While there have been some support of SB 519, many fellow legislators, law enforcement officials, and numerous public safety groups have come out against the bill, with many noting the dangers that psychedelics can bring.

“The dangers of psychedelics, more commonly called hallucinogens, are well documented,” former police officer and current drug counselor Marty Ribera explained to the Globe. “I read through this bill. Where are the parts that mention bad trips? Or the depression the drugs bring to users? Or, in the case of magic mushrooms, the inability to tell between the hallucination and real life? What about the deaths and injuries they cause. What about the long-term psychosis that many users develop? They’ve been banned for a reason.

“I asked 7 doctors about this bill before the interview, and they all thought it was a joke to legalize all of these. They all did say that any medical benefits should be studied, but making them legal for medical testing and just flat out making it legal across the board are two wildly different things.

“They’re trying to make this about the war on drugs, but this is a public safety issue. These kinds of drugs are much more impairing than alcohol or marijuana, and legalizing would not only increase the danger but cause testing problems. There is still no solid metric for testing for marijuana driving while high, and all of these thrown in would just be hell on police.

“We should test and look into medical testing legalization only. If taking some mushrooms really does help, say, a returning soldier who has PTSD, like some studies are beginning to show, then let’s be scientific and create viable limits. SB 519 says it’s scientific, but in reality, it’s just reckless because it legalizes everything at once. Not safe, very limited, controlled testing that would be the smart thing to do. But full blown legalization.

“The sheer stupidity of this bill is overwhelming.”

SB 519 is due to be brought up to a committee in the coming weeks.

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24 thoughts on “Psychedelic Drugs Such As LSD, Mescaline May Be Legalized In New Bill

  1. I’m starting to wonder if Sen Scott Wiener is under the influence of hallucinogenic drugs himself to come up with this clueless bill. Does he really not realize that something like this is the very last thing that we would ever need or want in the state of California, especially now?

  2. Of course they will….

    More irrefutable proof that California and Colorado Democrats are being controlled by the same sick forces as both legislatures initiate the same disruptive, destructive themes on their citizenry….

    Colorado and their legal weed pioneers decided to launch this initiative a couple of years ago and it’s still simmering on the back burner…

    Do a search in Denver’s Westword publication for proof…

    This also proves that Scott Weiner is a crazed degenerate with harmful radical intent to RUIN rational cultural norms and he should be recalled from a position of power for suggesting such a harmful, irresponsible piece of trash legislation….

    Weiner must go….

  3. Party at Wiener’s…young boys carefully selected to be just within the 10 year age gap. Psychedelic drugs to exploit young victims and embolden victimizers. Senator Scott Wiener legislative actions are disgusting.

  4. What is with this guy? Legalizing psychedelic drugs?!!! Everything Wiener is behind I am against. He wants to end fracking, he supports gun control, he supports adults molesting children, he is against the death penalty and now this? Is this wienerhead the state senator you want representing you San Francisco voters? Good Lord!

  5. War on drugs is over according to Weiner, free more criminals to sell dangerous street drugs to minors!! Decriminalize substance abuse for “social sharing?” Does that mean its ok to sell you therapeutic hallucinogens? Show me a medical professionals opinion that LSD, ecstasy and mushrooms are used for mental health issues such as PTSD/depression. Where are the MADD mothers on this topic? It is illegal drink and drive but you can hallucinate and drive because its therapeutic. This bill in no way will help treat addiction, it encourages it.

    1. The state should not be promoting use of psychotropic substances in any event, and certainly not now, with so much psychosis already on the streets and elsewhere. Really, it’s absurd.
      As I’m sure you know, there was, and probably still is, a school of thought that people could open their creative minds, enlighten themselves, “see God,” lift neuroses, etc., through hallucinogenic drugs, but it seems to me the potential for lingering psychoses and other things that can and do go wrong have been conveniently left out of that discussion. They don’t even want to be truthful about the downside of marijuana, for crying out loud, which can trigger psychosis in young people and cause a whole host of other health and life problems.
      I say, whether it’s pot or heroin, LSD or mushrooms, the generation that used this stuff most widely in their youth and beyond is now running the state of California, and look at what a mess we’re in now because of THEIR wacky thinking. Sure, it’s simplistic, but I rest my case anyway. 🙂

    2. In no way is this bill promoting driving when taking psychedelics. There are actually quite a lot of studies done by medical professionals promoting the safety and effectiveness of psychedelic therapy to treat PTSD, depression, anxiety, addiction and ocd. Please check out the studies on maps.org – pretty cool stuff that is really needed in the midst of the mental health crisis experienced in the United States.

  6. It is disheartening to read this article with its many false statements about psychedelics. These falsehoods were invented during the Nixon and Reagan administrations as part of a failed culture war. Read the actual peer-reviewed research about these materials, people! MDMA is likely to be FDA approved in less than two years. Psilocybin has had remarkable success treating PTSD and is on a fast-track for FDA approval. LSD was a psychiatric wonder drug until all research was abruptly halted. Many of these drugs have no known overdose level, and even users who inadvertently ingested hundreds of doses at once had no injury. They also have very low potential for addiction and have been show in many trials to stop nicotine and alcohol addiction with a single dose.

  7. You nailed it Showandtell!
    Are we all living in a Cheech and Chong movie?
    This is purposeful. In order to control a populace, you drug them, make them dependent on the drugs and the nanny state.
    It really is a tangled web and yes the work of Satan.
    California, sadly is looking more like a hell hole everyday.

    1. Cali Girl:

      Though I agree with you on the topic of drug dependency and the nanny state, it is clear that you’ve drawn a 180-degree-wrong conclusion on this topic. Psychedelics are not like cannabis, not like opiates, not like alcohol, not like tobacco. There is no evidence anywhere that the substances in SB 519 are addictive. Other than mescaline and ibogaine, there are no known overdose levels either, no known case of death caused by taking too much. Psilocybin and especially ibogaine have been shown to deliver massively higher cure rates in tobacco addiction and opiate addiction than any other materials studied. This is peer-reviewed, scientific literature, not scare-mongering from anti-hippie campaigning of the 1960’s. MDMA and psilocybin are more effective in curing PTSD than other therapies. These are cures, not dulled sensation (like opiates are). People with the condition stop having the condition.

      If you want to stop the nanny state, then stop the nanny state from holding back medicines that give people freedom.

  8. Eventual decrimilization is inevitable. You all are parroting the same codswallop that conservative folk have been parroting since the 50s. Wake up and learn for yourself instead of just parroting other people who know absolutely nothing about these substances. You are telling us that we need to be protected from ourselves. But you don’t even know what the negative effects are (apart from what other people tell you, completely unresearched).

    And tell me, why should the penalty against possession be more damaging to the individual than use of the drug itself?

    If you just focus on magic mushrooms alone, because the medical establishment has so long ago proven useless for the vast psychological disease that plagues our society, there is a vast culture of people having to use mushrooms themselves underground, and they are doing so successfully. Go to Erowid and look up actual descriptions, both good and bad of experiences people have had before you go parroting away and looking for other people’s arguments who know absolutely nothing about them. Go tell the people who have cured their own anxiety that they should be slapped in handcuffs.

    People are taking this stuff for personal growth and exploration. But maybe that’s just too weird for you.

    1. Only someone who is experiencing delusional remnants of their adventures with hallucinogens could look around California and think legalizing this stuff is something that must happen right now.
      By the way, why do you care so much? Why do you have such a stake in it?
      I have an idea. Go and do your hallucinogenic drugs. Go nuts! Do your worst. Who’s stopping you? But why you ‘folks’ have to get the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval on every wacky idea that comes out of the Bay Area I will never understand.

  9. Showandtell, you seem to have written your reply to “Reggie” but since you didn’t explicitly address anyone, I’ll take your question “Why do you have such a stake in it?”

    The biggest stake I have in it is the many friends and relations I care about deeply whose lives have changed. Given your apparent political/social orientation, the fact that two of these friends are US combat vets who served in Vietnam and Iraq would be of most interest to you. They went from severe PTSD cases, unable to sleep, to pretty near what you would call “normal.” Except, of course, that both of them would do almost anything to decriminalize the mushrooms that enabled them to heal from their wounds. For them, “Do your worst” as you say means “Get 8 hours of sleep at night. Stop obsessing about suicide.”

    And, by the way, I say “enabled” in the past tense because an important difference between mushrooms and anti-depressants (beyond producing good outcomes for a much larger fraction of patients) is that mushrooms potentiate healing and do not create dependency. Like opiates, anti-depressants and anti-psychotic drugs are notoriously difficult to stop once a person has started with them.

    1. @Concerned Citizen,
      I can appreciate you wanting to help your loved ones and whom suffer from PTSD. I also appreciate the libertarian stance you take. However, laws that can have disastrous consequences have to take into consideration the safety and good for all, aka: the common good.

      As my previous statements reflect, I despise the recreational use of drugs. If this classifies me as weird and out of touch then I welcome that as a badge of honor. Hallucinogens cause people to lose control of their actions and make poor choices. It may not lead to their own death but may lead to others. I know, it will be argued the poison is in the dose. Tell that to a parent who lost a child or is maimed during a drug trip! I am sure Michael Jackson thought his doctor had everything under control. The long list of drugs to be decriminalized includes Ketomine!

      The possibility of this becoming widely used by minors is horrifying. Let’s not be naive that this will not happen. Those who “socially share” with young adults are essentially given a slap on the wrist.

      This text of the bill, SB 519 states:
      (3) A person who knowingly gives away or administers a substance described in paragraph (1) to a person who is at least 18 years of age, but under 21 years of age is guilty of an infraction.

      Also the objective of this bill is to decrimnalize recreational use and does not address the FDA drug classification that you seem to support for valid research.
      This is taken from a Telegraph article:
      However, Dr Paul Abramson, a federally licensed ketamine therapist and the director of My Doctor Medical Group in San Francisco, said the bill would make no immediate difference to most clinicians’ actual practice, since it will not change medical regulations.
      He said the inclusion of ketamine was “highly problematic” because, unlike other “classical psychedelics”, it is highly addictive and dangerous outside controlled settings. Although he is in favour of general decriminalisation as a way of reducing harm to users, he urged caution for patients attempting DIY psychedelic therapy.

      When it comes to political action at the federal or state level it is usually best to follow the money. I would guess Silicon Valley technocrats who are micro dosing LSD, would like to see this pass.
      The bill can be read here:

      1. Cali Girl:

        Thank you for your answer. Clearly, you and I read from different pages of the “freedom” book. So, rather than arguing with your perspective, I’ll stick to differences interpreting the facts.

        “Hallucinogens cause people to lose control of their actions and make poor choices.” Some people will make poor choices to begin with, and if they use psychedelics, that could make the consequences worse. Psychedelics could also make the consequences less bad; it can go either way. This is true for everything from alcohol to chain saws. The available evidence points to psychedelic use being either neutral or positive in terms of life outcomes. It would be interesting to know what cases of “lead to death of others” actually are documented. I can think of Charles Manson, but he’s a uniquely pathetic case.

        The fact of any mind-altering substances being widely used by minors is horrifying. And that is exactly what’s happening now with alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, opiates and more. But eighteen-year-olds are not “minors”. They are old enough to commit to marriage or to join the Marines and participate in combat. They are also old enough to discern what they want to do with their lives and their minds.

        Dr. Abramson uses ketamine in his therapy because it is the only psychedelic material that’s legal for him to use right now. And oddly, his statement that you quoted setting a distinction between ketamine and “classical psychedelics” underlines the main impact SB 519 will have: Psilocybin, mescaline and DMT/ayahuasca (the “classical psychedelics”) will be more available to users who are willing to take the effort to produce this themselves.

        It’s hard to imagine a SB-519 future where a person would chose ketamine or LSD (which have to be manufactured, and illegally distributed by mostly unknown chemists) would be more attractive than the “classical psychedelics.” There would be no legal consequence for use or possession in either case, but the “classicals” would be safe to grow.

  10. OMG Those are so much more dangerous than alcohol and marijuana!!! good thing they’re illegal so no one can do them.????

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