Uhh… now that Colorado has legalized psychedelic mushrooms, can we just… you know… take them?
Well, it turns out, if you want, yeah.
Colorado voters passed Proposition 122, which establishes the “Natural Medicine Health Act.” The ballot initiative, which won 53.6% of the vote in Colorado, works on two fronts. First, it decriminalizes psychedelic mushrooms for personal use for people 21 and older. And second, it authorizes the creation of state-regulated “healing centers” where people can experience the drug with licensed professionals.
On the personal use front, there are some stipulations. For starters, you have to be 21 and older. And, the new law prohibits any retail or commercial sales. So, if you were thinking that you could pick up mushrooms much in the same way you can marijuana, that’s not the case. However, you can “share” and “gift” the fungi (no word if you’re allowed to trade for that Jerry Garcia tapestry on Etsy you’ve been eyeing). The law also seals the criminal records of anyone who has been convicted of using the substance.
So, if you’re interested in dabbling in the now decriminalized drug, what should you do? Well, for one, we’re not sure why you’re asking US. But the answer remains a bit unclear.
Of course, people have been sharing (and selling) mushrooms forever. And, increasingly, more people are growing them at home. How you might get started or introduced to that sort of thing, we’ll leave up to you. Suffice to say, there’s a thing called Google, which can direct you to all the explainers you’d need. And, it’s pretty easy to find starter kits, should that be your life journey.
Or, you could go looking around pastures for the mushrooms growing on cattle poop.
As for licensed healing centers, that’s far more complicated. Colorado’s Department of Regulatory Agencies has until January 2024 to develop criteria for the centers and plans to begin accepting applications for operators by the end of that year. An advisory board made up of 15 members with different areas of expertise and experience will help in that process.
While people obviously use psychedelic mushrooms recreationally, Prop 122 was sold by proponents largely because of the supposed mental health benefits of the drug, which have been shown to help with anxiety, depression, PTSD, addiction and other conditions.
Ultimately, it likely won’t be until summer 2025 until you can walk into a healing center and explore the inner depths of your mind. What these centers will actually look like, however, is anyone’s guess until the process works itself out. Also, if all goes well, the state has the authority to legalize other drugs, including DMT, ibogaine and mescaline.
One possible example of how it might work in Colorado could be in Oregon, the only other state to legalize mushrooms and the first to do so in 2020. Oregon’s initiative is expected to take effect in early 2023.
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