Yesterday, social media blew up with news that “cannabis had been made legal in Mexico”.
Which is kind of, sort of true, but before you start dusting off your high school Spanish textbook with plans to move to Oaxaca and open a dispensary, slow your roll and take uno momento por favor to get a fuller understanding of the situation.
On October 31, the Supreme Court of Mexico issued two rulings regarding individuals being allowed to use cannabis for recreational purposes.
Per ABC News: “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.”
This follows three other rulings on the same matter between 2015 and 2017, which is important, because in Mexico, if there are five similar court rulings on a particular matter, it sets a standard which may be applied in a greater capacity.
Per ABC: “‘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.”
Full legalization is still a long ways away.
In order for it to happen, Congress would be responsible for designing and enacting a formal legalization program which could include commercial cannabis production, dispensaries, lab testing standards, and other rules that come with a taxed and regulated recreational cannabis program.