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Fun fact: Although I write nearly exclusively about cannabis, I enjoy other things which sprout from the ground and can bring joy to those who partake (or abject terror—the mind is a tricky thing sometimes). Things such as kale, or, I don't know, psilocybin, AKA magic mushrooms.

The biggest issue with psilocybin is that it's illegal, and there's currently no licensed, regulated, taxed recreational adult-use magic mushroom program in Oregon, and although some fascinating studies show their value for those with PTSD or in hospice care settings, there is no medical psilocybin program, either.

However, this week we moved one step closer to some form of this becoming a reality, with Oregon's Attorney General approving the language for a ballot measure to allow licensed medical professionals to administer psilocybin for therapeutic purposes. (Please note that I said "licensed medical professionals" and not "your college buddy who likes to throw on a lab coat for Phish shows while carrying around a bottle of liquid acid and calling himself Dr. Feelgood.")

As I don't have a Google alert for "psilocybin legalization in Oregon," this great news comes to us courtesy of gold-standard website Marijuana Moment, which reports that this potential ballot measure is now titled the "Psilocybin Service Initiative" and will need to collect 140,000 valid signatures of registered voters to qualify for the November 2020 ballot. (Finally, a reason to vote in 2020, provided we aren't a smoking crater of ruin by then.)

Per Marijuana Moment:

The Oregon Psilocybin Society (OPS) said it had to “fight for neutral and accurate wording” from the state attorney general’s office, but that the group is now “generally satisfied with the final wording” for the summary of the measure, which would also reduce criminal penalties for psilocybin-related offenses, adding that PSI2020 would "establish a new program through the state Health Authority that would authorize licensed facilitators to produce, process, deliver, possess and administer psilocybin in a clinical setting.

We actually have company in this quest—Denver's seeking to get a similar measure onto their 2020 ballot, and a measure in California tried, but failed, to qualify for 2018.

Psilocybin has certainly gained broader awareness and acceptance, due in part to the popularity of noted author Michael Pollan's latest book How to Change Your Mind. What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence. Many have spoken of the remarkable benefits a regimen of micro-dosing psilocybin has had on their mental health, so support may be more widespread than ever.

There will, of course, be those who will vigorously oppose the passage if it makes the ballot, and it will be interesting to see if those campaign ads and rhetoric are as ill-informed and hysterical as that of cannabis prohibitionists.