Cannabis and its Rapidly Changing Legal Landscape

In 2023, the United States is experiencing a significant shift in the attitudes and laws surrounding cannabis use. Currently, 42% of all US states have legalized the use of recreational marijuana, with 21 states and the District of Columbia permitting recreational cannabis for adults aged 21 and older. Examples of these states include California, Oregon, and Colorado. 37 other states approve of medical marijuana, where users have to be approved by a medical practitioner. Additionally, 11 states allow CBD oils and small amounts of THC for medical use, while two states do not approve of either CBD or marijuana use at all.

The increasing trend towards legalizing cannabis is reflected in public opinion, with 59% of Americans supporting both medical and recreational use. 30% support medical use only and only 10% oppose legalization. Notably, 44% of Americans live in states with access to legal recreational marijuana. The majority opinion has shifted greatly within even the last few decades. 

Experts predict that the trend towards state-level cannabis legalization will continue in 2023, with legislation surrounding marijuana and CBD remaining in flux. Advocates for legalization, such as Tyler McFadden, Board Member of BOWL PAC, emphasize the importance of proactive efforts towards legalizing cannabis to expedite progress. Even President Joe Biden acknowledges the disproportionate impact of criminalizing marijuana possession and supports reform, stating that “sending people to prison for possessing marijuana has upended too many lives and incarcerated people for conduct that many states no longer prohibit.”

The evolving legal landscape of cannabis and CBD is highlighted in the infographic from, which details the varying levels of legality across all 50 states. As the legalization movement gains momentum, it is likely that the laws and attitudes surrounding cannabis and CBD will continue to shift, presenting both opportunities and challenges for individuals and businesses operating in the cannabis industry.