Don’t Fear the Reefer

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A story by Dan Eggen in this morning’s Washington Post notes that the FBI has abandoned its time-worn policy of automatically disqualifying job applicants who have used drugs. According to the Post:

Old guidelines barred FBI employment to anyone who had used marijuana more than 15 times in their lives or who had tried other illegal narcotics more than five times.

But those strict numbers no longer apply. Applicants for jobs such as analysts, programmers or special agents must still swear that they have not used any illegal substances recently — three years for marijuana and 10 years for other drugs — but they are no longer ruled out of consideration because of more frequent drug use in the past…

FBI officials say the move is simply an acknowledgment of reality in a country where, according to some estimates, up to a third of the population has tried marijuana at some point.

Even with its relaxed standards, the FBI remains tougher on former drug users than other federal agencies, most notably the CIA. Those wishing to work for “the Company” are evaluated holistically, “with any history of illegal drug use being one factor considered in a careful assessment process,” according to CIA spokesman Paul Gimigliano.

Anybody got a lighter?

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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