Marijuana legalization and the widespread use of medical cannabis have made the how and when of enforcing workplace drug policies  vexed questions. Medical and non-medical consumers both have faced workplace sanctions and terminations for legal, off-the-clock cannabis use. But what happened to Vietnam veteran and former Dean of the Air Force Special Operations School (AFSOS) Henry Cobbs is perhaps the most striking recent instance of the conflict between the medical application of cannabis and the rule of law.

Henry Cobbs Lost His Job For Talking About CBD and Vaping at Work

A 22-year tour of duty with the Air Force, a PhD in educational technology, and a distinguished career as an academic dean at AFSOS: Henry Cobbs has an impressive CV. “My life has been sort of a storybook, to tell you the truth,” Cobbs told reporters with the Herald Tribune.

But now, Cobbs is trying to safeguard that legacy after losing his job for his use—his medical use—of a “Schedule I controlled substance.” But Cobbs wasn’t caught consuming THC. He wasn’t smoking weed. Instead, the substance that cost him his job with AFSOS was the non-psychoactive cannabinoid CBD, or cannabidiol.

In 2016, Cobbs learned that he had intraductal carcinoma of

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