Salvia to be banned in Massachusetts

October 20, 2008

The Massachusetts House of Representatives approved and sent to the Senate a proposal classifying Salvia Divinorum as a class C substance and making its use illegal in Massachusetts.

Supporters of the ban said that Salvia, already banned in eight states, is an increasingly popular and dangerous mind-altering drug that produces hallucinations and long-term perception disorders and has been linked to some violence and suicides. They noted that it is being glamorized on YouTube and argued that it is time to crack down on this dangerous substance.

Opponents of the ban, noting that the substance is legal in all countries except Australia, said that Salvia is not a hallucinogen and argued that small doses have been used responsibly and safely by adults for years for divination, healing, meditation and the exploration of consciousness. They said that the Youtube videos are anecdotal and are creating hysteria and a misguided movement to ban the substance. They argued that banning Salvia would put an end to promising research that it can be used to successfully treat many diseases and conditions including bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s addiction, depression and pain.

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