Canada just voted in Justin Trudeau and his liberal government – will we see Canada’s maple leaf turn into marijuana leaf?
We tend to think of the “war on drugs” as a domestic thing; as something that only happens in North America. However, there is a series of international treaties regarding drug trade and drug laws, which makes the war on drugs a uniquely global phenomenon. That’s one reason legalizing marijuana has been so difficult, and why it’s only been in the past few years that we’ve really seen progress towards taking it off these no-fly lists.
Where in The World is Weed Legal?
According to Vox, there are very few full countries in the world where marijuana is legal. How few? Uruguay. While there are nations like Spain and the Netherlands who have relaxed their enforcement on marijuana, and places similar to the U.S. where marijuana is legal in some cities but not in others, practically nowhere in the world has rolled up its sleeves and declared that marijuana is not a threat, and that it is unequivocally legal within their national borders.
Of course, Canada might soon add its name to that list.
Canada’s New, Liberal Government
Recently, Canada elected a liberal government, headed by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, which ended many years of conservative rule. While the liberal party brought up a number of different issues while it was on the campaign path, one of the issues that got the most attention was the legalization of marijuana in Canada. Quotes such as, “Canada’s current system of marijuana prohibition does not work. It does not prevent young people from using marijuana and too many Canadians end up with criminal records for possessing small amounts of the drug,” made their position quite clear.
Those are fighting words, compared to how the conservative government ran things in the past. However, with reports of crime going down and tax revenues going up in places like Colorado and Washington in the United States, Canada isn’t exactly taking a leap of faith. The liberal party is just suggesting that they try legalization on a larger scale to see what it can do for their people, their economy, and their criminal justice system.
While there are no concrete policies in place yet, there are a lot of people in Canada who are waiting to see if those living under the maple leaf will be the first industrialized nation to boldly step forward and say “enough is enough” with regards to the war on cannabis.
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