Calls to decriminalize psychoactive plants, mushrooms in Atlanta

Advocates of decriminalizing psychoactive plants and fungi are asking the Atlanta City Council to consider their request.

The proposal asks for the city to decriminalize so-called entheogen plants known to many as magic mushrooms or peyote buttons or other names.

Siemone Guirguis, the executive director of the Georgia Chapter of Decriminalize Nature, said the primary goal of decriminalizing psilocybin and other entheogens is to prevent incarcerations. She said so far 17 U.S. cities have decriminalized them. With many cities already onboard, she hopes Atlanta will follow what she said is shaping up to be a national trend, following the path of decriminalizing or legalizing cannabis.

She said for hundreds of years, cultures worldwide have turned to entheogen for medicinal and spiritual reasons. Advocates like Guirguis said a body of work and evidence is building toward the benefits of decriminalizing entheogen.

There were mixed reactions on the streets of Atlanta from visitors of a trade convention in town.

Guirguis has numerous follow-up meetings scheduled with Atlanta City Council members and possibly the police department.