Decriminalize Psilocybin Mushrooms in Memphis

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Memphians will benefit from the decriminalization of magic mushrooms.

These psilocybin containing mushrooms grow wild throughout Shelby County. The psilocybin found inside this mushroom is the focus of immense scientific, clinical, and governmental research into its role in treating major-depressive disorder and treatment resistant depression. 

Unfortunately, possession of a single-gram of dried mushrooms can lead to incarceration. This is because the DEA classifies it as Schedule I Drug, which means the Federal government doesn't recognize a drug's therapeutic potential and can put us into prison. But some researchers argue that classification should change. And this change is happening pretty quickly. 

Despite its Schedule I drug status, clinical trials are showing that psilocybin therapy can be a much a safer alternative to most depression medicine with fewer side-effects. The FDA is monitoring the upcoming results from stage III clinical trials for depression disorders. So far, the trials demonstrate psilocybin's effectiveness at treating people's debilitating depression. There's also smaller trials and research being conducted as well. They are worth noting here and here.

The good news is that these clinical trials will likely bring effective treatment to millions of people. And there will be thousands if not tens of thousands, or even hundreds of thousands, of people in Tennessee and the local Mid-south region who could benefit from psilocybin assisted therapy. And we should rejoice.

The bad news is that psilocybin will only be available to those who can afford the cost. Patients will likely have to pay $1,000s for synthetic psilocybin. This medicalized legal framework will further an unnecessary wedge in our city. Some people will have to choose between food, shelter, and clothing or life changing mental health treatment.

And while doctors and pharmaceutical companies reap the economic windfall, those who choose to eat a mushroom from the ground for free will have their freedom taken from them.  This is not right. And we have the moral and political responsibility to prevent bad things from happening to good people.

The time to do what's right is right now.

This petition requests that the Memphis City Council pass a resolution to decriminalize the possession of psilocybin containing mushrooms and begin a psilocybin task force. This task force will create a detailed analysis of the financial and philosophical impact of creating common sense psilocybin laws and regulations for Memphis, TN.

A few more reasons to do what’s right.

  • Psilocybin containing mushrooms grow wild all around Shelby County
  • Psilocybin, when used safely, has been shown to reduce depression and anxiety in clinical trials
  • Psilocybin is non-lethal
  • Psilocybin is non-addictive
  • There are already few arrests for psilocybin possession
  • Many people who have eaten psilocybin have found enormous therapeutic impacts and have brought joy into their lives
  • Psilocybin has shown to reduce addictive behaviors
  • Individuals can safely grow and consume psilocybin containing mushrooms without causing disruption to society
  • Planning for a future means greater access to health care options

Wont the State of Tennessee simply pre-empt our effort?

Regardless of what the state does or doesn’t do, we should collectively move forward with a resolution to make psilocybin possession the lowest priority for law enforcement and to create the psilocybin task force. We should set our sights on the horizon and plan for the future.

Bottom Line

Psilocybin decriminalization is morally resolute and politically feasible. You must do what’s right. Decriminalize and implement a psilocybin task force today.