Perhaps no nation has suffered from the Drug War as much as Mexico. Our southern neighbor, thrown into political and cultural turmoil by drug cartels, is certainly in the conversation of experiencing the most havok from the War on Drugs. Fortunately, there is some hope on the horizon, starting with some tremendous progress on the medical cannabis front as the Mexican Senate just overwhelmingly voted to legalize medicinal use.
“It’s been years that we’ve been fighting for acknowledgment and approval and recognition of the medical and therapeutic uses of cannabis, and today we finally have something,” said Lisa Sanchez, director of drug policy for Mexico Unido Contra la Delincuencia, a group working to curb crime.
Tuesday’s decision was “not the end of the road,” she added.
Recreational marijuana is still broadly prohibited in Mexico, but last year the Supreme Court granted four people the right to grow their own marijuana for personal consumption, opening the door to legalization.
As Reuters noted, the medical cannabis bill, proposed by President Enrique Pena Nieto, passed the Senate 98 to 7 and now must be passed by the Mexican House. With this recent legislative success and the Mexican Supreme Court ruling that a few individuals had the right to produce personal amounts of cannabis, it is great to see progress towards sensible cannabis laws in Mexico. Hopefully, the great nation will move towards legalizing for all adults soon and look towards future drug reform policies that will take prohibition-inflated profits out of the hands of drug cartels and into the coffers of government programs that will benefit Mexican citizens.