Is Ganja Legal for Rastas in the United States?

Two men smoking ganja

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Marijuana, commonly known as ganja among Rastas, is illegal in most countries, including the US. However, as an important part of the Rastafari religion, is ganja smoking protected by the First Amendment, which guarantees religious freedom?


No. Possessing marijuana is illegal in the United States regardless of religion. In fact, while a number of states have taken steps to decriminalize marijuana use, particularly for medical reasons, federal agencies can still arrest marijuana users within those states.

Many compare the Rasta use of ganja to the Native American use of peyote, which is legal in certain religious circumstances despite the fact that both ganja and peyote are Schedule I drugs, which are the most highly controlled substances.