Oakland’s city council unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday that decriminalizes the use of entheogenic plants, a category that includes flora such as “magic mushrooms,” cactuses, and iboga that can induce a psychedelic experience.
Oakland is the second city in the country, after Denver, to decriminalize these substances. However, magic mushrooms still remain illegal under federal and California laws. The resolution states that law enforcement should not prioritize arresting or investigating adults who use the substances and that the county should not prosecute people involved in their use. But it does not authorize driving under the influence of these drugs. It does not create any marketplaces or commercial sale mechanisms for distribution of entheogenic plants, and bars their distribution at schools.
The effort was started by Decriminalize Nature Oakland (DNO), which bills itself as a campaign to educate the public about the use of entheogenic plants to “decriminalize our relationship to nature.”
Supporters of the resolution argue that these drugs have medical and spiritual benefits and have historically been used by some cultures for healing and in rituals.
Councilman Noel Gallo introduced the resolution after being approached by DNO, but he told The Washington Post that his family has had a long history of cultivating and using entheogenic plants. [Read More @ The Washington Post]