Marijuana and Cannabis World News
Update 12/11/13 - 8:20 a.m.: Uruguay yesterday became the first country in the world to legalize and regulate cannabis sales as well as legalize the home cultivation for adults over 21. The Uruguayan Senate yesterday gave final approval to the proposed measure, passing the bill over to President Jose Mujica, who is expected to sign it into law. The bill passed with a 16-13 majority.
"Today is an historic day. Many countries of Latin America, and many governments, will take this law as an example," Sen. Constanza Moreira said after the vote.
This should probably be widely known information at this point, but do not try and smuggle pot out of Kingston's Norman Manley International Airport. After 40 years of being known as the pot capitol of the Caribbean, the police have made it pretty hard to get through one of their largest airports.
Take yesterday, for example, when cops busted four different, unrelated groups of people trying to get ganja out of the country netting a total of 156.4 pounds of compressed buds according to the Jamaica Observer.
The relatively calm and temperate coastal waters stretching between Tijuana, Mexico and San Diego, California have long served as an alternate route for drug smugglers hoping to avoid the heavily congested and scrutinized overland border crossing checkpoints separating the two countries.
From paddling pounds of pot over on surfboards, to cramming kilos of chronic into claustrophobic garage-built submarines, authorities on both sides of the border have pretty much seen it all when it comes to maritime marijuana smuggling on the west coast. Startling though, is what seems to be a recent uptick in interdiction involving gunfire, and whether or not that is a result of new, more aggressive tactics by the Coast Guard.
Sensible British Columbia Campaign organizer Dana Larsen Sunday announced that the ballot initiative they had been pushing to decriminalize marijuana possession failed to collect enough signature in time for the deadline.
Still, the group says they collected 200,000 signatures and that they're looking forward to 2015 with another plan to prevent police from enforcing marijuana laws in the Canadian province.
Morocco has long been known as a Mecca of cannabis cultivation and hash exportation, with Moroccan hash long prized for its potency and quality. The only thing keeping it from becoming an accepted commodity is that pesky thing called "legality," as cannabis isn't legal in Morocco.
But that might change soon. The Moroccan parliament has begun hearings on the possibility of legalizing the production and exportation of cannabis for medical and industrial purposes.
A medical marijuana using Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer has kicked off a media storm in Canada this week after publicly admitted his cannabis use while on the job, notably while in the iconic red uniforms Mounties are known for wearing.
This caused outrage from the RCMP, but not so much about Cpl. Ronald Francis using ganja itself. He can do that and even while on the job, they say. But the Yukon will thaw before he's allowed to light up while wearing his Red Serge.
While he hasn't come around completely on recreational cannabis use, Dr. Fenton Ferguson, Jamaican Minister of Health, says medical cannabis should be legalized in his country.
"Jamaica can't lock off itself from the rest of the world or the research findings that are available, that is pointing to a significant number of elicits that medical marijuana is responding to, so I want that to be very, very clear, that when it comes to medical marijuana, I am fully on board," he tells the Jamaica Observer.
A Thai woman caught with nearly 40 pounds of pot in a bus station in Sungai Petani last February will be hung for her "crime" according to Malaysian English-language news site, The Star.
Thitapah Charoenchuea, a 26-year-old single mother of a ten-year-old daughter, has maintained that she is was framed and that this was someone else's drug deal gone wrong. She says that a man she only knew as "Ali" approached her before she boarded a bus after a brief stop on a bus from Changlun to Kuala Lumpur and asked Thitapah to take care of his bags and he would meet her in Kuala Lumpur.
The mayor of Amsterdam is pushing for laws that would close cannabis-friendly coffee shops within 250 meters of schools, but only for part of the day. After about 6 p.m. as well as all weekend long and on holidays, the shops can open back up to tokers and space-cake eaters alike.
Wikimedia commons/Public domain image.
In the states, heads would roll over shops being within 250 feet of a school or even 1,000 feet of a school. Actually, that's not true. The feds simply send out $.49 letters to everyone within 1,000 feet of schools and shut them down without really lifting a finger.
Jamaica has long been recognized as the globe's marijuana mecca -- a place where a large percentage of the population not only enjoys the plant's benefits but regards it as a sacrament.
So it's more than a little surprising to discover an editorial in Jamaica's largest newspaper calling for the nation's leaders to emulate officials somewhere else when it comes to pot. The place? Colorado. Denver Westword has the full story.