Psychedelic policy changes are paving the way to the decriminalization of psilocybin mushrooms and ayahuasca in the United States. Magic mushrooms in particular are part of the entheogenic psychoactive fungi that voter initiative and signature collections are looking to legalize.
Hallucinogenic substances are, sometimes, used for treatment-resistant depression, which is why there is a viable medical defense against law prohibitions. However, the unlawful purchase of spore syringes and the cultivation of spores with the intent of producing mushrooms containing psilocybin or psilocin are, usually, considered a felony-misdemeanor and can lead to felony arrest and conviction of up to three years in prison.
Sales and transportation of psilocybin or psilocin are also prohibited in many states, but medical research using microscopic mushroom spores and analysis do not violate federal laws. Moreover, medical defense is viable if medical necessity can be established. But, it has to be proven that there are no adequate alternatives with or without prescription.
According to the Health and Safety Code, anyone in the possession of anything containing psilocybin or psilocin is subject to prosecution and punishable by up to one year in jail. Personal use or possession and transportation with the intent of drug treatment are, usually, grounds for granting probation because these acts are classified as nonviolent drug offenses. The Penal Code allows for probation if the drug treatment is no longer than a year and not related to a sale offense. However, if sale intent is established, the act becomes a non-reducible felony punishable by up to three years in jail.
If imported into another state, or attempted to be imported into another state, the spore syringes can be perceived as an illegal drug potentially transported, sold and administered across the states, which constitutes a non-reducible felony punishable by up to nine years in prison. Moreover, facilitation of the sale of the drug can also lead to a maximum of four years in prison.
Religious defense is challenging because it is easily dismissible. An illegal act motivated by religious beliefs is still considered unconstitutional simply because liberty of religion does not guarantee the excuse of acts which hinder safety in a state. However, visionary legislators propose changes to benefit the consumption of psychoactive fungi across the states in the near future.