Now it's up to the state's Senate to consider the bill decriminalizing the possession of psilocybin and authorizing research of the psychedelic for a wide array of medical conditions.
The psychedelic decriminalization train keeps on chugging in the United States, with Oklahoma moving one step closer to passing a bill which would decriminalize psilocybin, the active ingredient in “magic mushrooms.”
On Monday, the state’s Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly, 62-30, to pass House Bill 3414, introduced by Rep. Daniel Pae (R).
The bill has two main provisions. Most significantly, Pae’s bill would decriminalize the possession of up to one and a half ounces of psilocybin, a very large amount. Instead of jail time, those found in possession of psilocybin would only face a $400 fine. And while the old maxim of, if a punishment for a crime is a fine, then the law only applies to the poor, rings true here, a $400 fine is certainly better than a life-destroying jail sentence.
The second significant provision of the law would authorize Oklahoma institutions to research psilocybin and psilocin as medicines to treat 10 different conditions, including PTSD, depression and addiction. As we have seen time and time again, when combined with therapy, psychedelics such as psilocybin have shown very promising results in treating mental health conditions.
Now that the bill has passed the House, it will be sent to the state’s Senate, which like the House has a Republican supermajority. If the Senate passes the bill as is, it will be sent to the governor for signing. If this happens, the psilocybin decriminalization and research bill would become law 180 days after the signature is complete.
It is also possible that the Senate could make changes to the bill, which would then require the House to vote on it again. Despite this possibility, it must be said that it is beginning to look likely that House Bill 3414 will ultimately be passed, even if there are further small changes enacted.
As reported by Psychedelic Spotlight in the past, one of the most significant storylines of the shifting legal landscape for psychedelics such as psilocybin is the bi-partisan nature of the decriminalization and research fight. Here in Oklahoma, as already mentioned, both the House and the Senate have Republican supermajorities, and Governor Kevin Stitt is also Republican. Yet, this bill looks likely to pass.
If it does, Oklahoma will join not only more liberal jurisdictions like Oregon and some California cities in liberalizing psychedelics laws, but also deeply conservative ones such as Texas, which recently passed a bill allowing for the study of substances such as MDMA and psilocybin to help treat veterans. In fact, the scientific data showing that psychedelics can help treat PTSD in veterans may be one of the core reasons Republicans, and even Fox News, are jumping on the psychedelics train.
After all, who doesn’t want to help our veterans?