Mexico court sets precedent on legal, recreational pot use

Mexico’s Supreme Court issued two more rulings Wednesday ordering that complainants in individual cases be allowed to use marijuana for recreational purposes, establishing a precedent that a blanket prohibition on pot is unconstitutional.

The court found that adults have a fundamental right to personal development which lets them decide their recreational activities without interference from the state.

“That right is not absolute, and the consumption of certain substances may be regulated, but the effects provoked by marijuana do not justify an absolute prohibition of its consumption,” the ruling said.

The high court ordered the Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risk to authorize the complainants to consume marijuana, though not to commercialize it or use other drugs.

The two decisions followed three similar ones between 2015 and 2017, and under Mexican law five decisions on a related issue set a standard that applies more broadly.

“With the existence of five precedents in the same vein on the subject, the judgment will be mandatory for all courts in the country,” the high tribunal concluded.

The rulings technically do not legalize recreational use, however. They establish that courts must allow it, but it is still up to each individual to press his or her case in the judicial system.

Mexico saw something similar happen in recent years with five Supreme Court rulings establishing a broader precedent allowing same-sex couples to wed, though same-sex marriage has yet to become the law of the land nationwide.

Mexico United Against Crime, a group that opposes prohibitionist drug policies, said Wednesday’s rulings “open the door to regulation of cannabis” and confirm that “Mexico must move toward the regulation of drugs to improve conditions of justice and peace in the country.”

Formal legalization would be up to Congress, and the group urged lawmakers to act.

“The Supreme Court has done its job. … The responsibility for issuing the corresponding regulation falls on congress,” the group’s director general, Lisa Sanchez, said in a statement.

Mexico has long been the source of marijuana smuggled into the United States. The rulings from Mexico‘s Supreme Court come after many U.S. states have legalized pot in recent years for medicinal purposes, recreational use or both.

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A previous version of this story was corrected to show that the earlier rulings came between 2015 and 2017.

 

Source: Mexico court sets precedent on legal, recreational pot use

Wall Street’s Marijuana Madness: ‘It’s Like the Internet in 1997’

 

Entrepreneurs and investors are rushing headlong into the nascent legal marijuana industry, fueling a stock craze reminiscent of the late 1990s dot-com bubble and the recent bitcoin mania.

TORONTO—Shannon Soqui just quit his Wall Street job to go after what he thinks is a bigger business: selling marijuana the way Mary Kay Inc. sells cosmetics.

The 51-year-old banker wants to focus on Qind, his San Francisco startup that organizes home parties to sell cannabis products, to get a piece of what he says could sprout into a $100 billion annual business in the U.S.

“It’s like the internet in 1997 or 1998,” said Mr. Soqui. “Investment opportunities to create new businesses have never been more compelling.”

Entrepreneurs and investors are rushing headlong into the nascent legal marijuana industry, fueling a stock craze reminiscent of the late 1990s dot-com bubble and the recent bitcoin mania. Big companies, wealthy families and amateurs alike are taking stakes in speculative companies, many of which have scant revenue or history.

Source: Wall Street’s Marijuana Madness: ‘It’s Like the Internet in 1997’

The Amount of Older Americans Using Marijuana Is Getting, Um, Higher

Boomers are experimenting with marijuana more than ever before. Here’s what it could mean.

Marijuana is apparently booming among, well, boomers. Specifically, marijuana use is becoming more prevalent among Americans over 50, according to a new study in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence.

The study analyzed survey responses from more than 17,000 adults over 50 and found that roughly 9% of American adults ages 50 to 64 used marijuana in the past year. Around 3% of adults over age 65 tried marijuana in that same period.

In practical terms, wider adoption of cannabis products among middle-aged and older adults certainly makes sense. In terms of medical use, marijuana is often cited as diminishing nausea and pain symptoms. And just this June, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the nation’s first-ever cannabis-based drug, Epidiolex.

Source: The Amount of Older Americans Using Marijuana Is Getting, Um, Higher

Marijuana Bill Scheduled For Congressional Vote This Week

The U.S. House panel that oversees federal drug enforcement is scheduled to vote this week on a bill to dramatically expand opportunities for research on the medical benefits of marijuana.

The House Judiciary Committee is expected to approve legislation to license more growers of cannabis to be used in scientific research.

Source: Marijuana Bill Scheduled For Congressional Vote This Week

Americans support bill to shield legal cannabis states, legalizing marijuana

Nearly three-quarters of American voters surveyed by Qunnipiac University say they would support legislation that shields states that have legalized medical or recreational from federal prosecution.

Source: Americans support bill to shield legal cannabis states, legalizing marijuana

Legal marijuana’s arrival in downtown Spokane prompts desire to re-evaluate laws

Lucky Leaf opened on First Avenue last month, and a proposed store at the corner of Lincoln and Second Avenue seems primed for downtown Spokane’s second legal pot shop. The businesses say they hope to revitalize the western part of Spokane’s downtown, but neighbors worry about the consequences.

Source: Legal marijuana’s arrival in downtown Spokane prompts desire to re-evaluate laws