Legalising marijuana: The law of the weed

Legalising marijuana: The law of the weed

posted in: Current TV RSS by On July 16th, 2010

IN 1971 a group of teenagers in San Rafael, north of San Francisco, started meeting after school, at 4:20PM, to get high. The habit spread, and 420 became code for fun time among potheads worldwide. Ever since, California has remained in the vanguard of global cannabis culture. Oaksterdam University in Oakland is today unique in the world as a sort of Aristotelian lyceum for the study of all aspects—horticultural, scientific, historical—of the weed.

Legally, California has also been a pioneer, at least within America. In 1996 it was the first state to allow marijuana to be grown and consumed for medicinal purposes. Since then, 13 states and the District of Columbia have followed, and others are considering it. But this year California may set a more fundamental, and global, precedent. It may become the first jurisdiction in the world to legalise, regulate and tax the consumption, production and distribution of marijuana.

Other Western countries—from Argentina to Belgium and Portugal—have liberalised their marijuana laws in recent decades. Some places, such as the Netherlands and parts of Australia, have in effect decriminalised the use of cannabis. But no country has yet gone all the way.

http://www.economist.com/node/16591136?story_id=16591136&fsrc=rss

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