Why The World Might Be Ready to Legalize Cannabis in June
Activists have been claiming that cannabis will be legalized within the ‘next five years’ for decades now. Yet despite these predictions, we haven’t seen a full scale legalization effort take off yet. As of now, only certain more progressive states and countries have embraced the idea.
This of course is creating momentum, however, this June all of that might change. This is because this June, The World Health Organization’s Expert Committee on Drug Dependence will be reviewing marijuana classification on the international playing field.
Depending on the findings and the process of analysis, cannabis could be re-scheduled internationally, which would provide much more momentum on legalization across the planet.
This is why the FDA recently asked people’s input on cannabis legalization to inform them of where it stands within the public sphere, in order to weigh in on the debate this June.
Of course, we know that the vast majority of the US is in favor of legalization and the medical data has been in favor of legalization. The sad thing is that we’ve known about this since the 1971 Schaeffer Report, however, that data has been ignored for decades by the government [despite the government funding the report].
Furthermore, internationally speaking, countries such as Israel, Australia, Uruguay and many more have opted in for a more expanded version of legalization. With Canada jumping into the mix, the global atmosphere considering the re-scheduling of cannabis seems favorable.
Historically speaking, the US has long been the loudest voice in the room when it comes to not legalizing cannabis. However, that was before more than half of its states opted in for a legal framework. Within the international stage, any opposition of legalization from the US would be come across as having “double-standards”.
Additionally, the effects of legalization on the price per kilo of cartel weed is also a significant point of interest. Legalization is achieving what prohibition couldn’t for more than eight decades. Statistically speaking, kids are smoking less cannabis today than they were in the 1990s-1980s. Cartels are having a hard time competing with a superior product being produced by a legal market. There is more control over the system and social benefits, including added tax revenue and less strain on law enforcement.
What happens if Cannabis is rescheduled internationally
We know that the UN can only make suggestions. They don’t have the power to infringe on the sovereignty of any country. This means, that despite the re-scheduling of cannabis on the international playing field, no country is obliged to follow suit.
The only difference it would make is that international efforts to stop cannabis production and sales would be diminished. Furthermore, it would make it less risky for countries that are thinking about legalization to go ahead with their plans. Countries such as Colombia, Belize, Brazil, Chile and even Mexico have been toying with the idea of full-scale legalization.
By removing the importance of cannabis from the board of internationally controlled substances, these countries would have a lower chance of retaliation from the international community. They would be free to legalized without repercussions.
What I believe would happen [if cannabis is rescheduled internationally] is the same thing that is happening to the United States on a state level. The world won’t legalize it all at once, however individual countries will begin to legalize at an exponential rate.
Eventually, countries that still hold on to the prohibition model will begin to lose within the international cannabis trade. A trade that will easily surpass hundreds of billions of dollars, and we’re only talking about the recreational and medical aspects of cannabis.
Once Hemp truly forms part of the international framework, the industry will grow even faster and countries will be forced into legalization whether they like it or not.
This also aligns itself quite nicely with the global “green movement” that is occurring. People are getting worried about the environment; they are becoming more conscientious about the impact we as humans have on the planet. This means that ecological alternatives are becoming more valuable within the international marketplace.
Hemp and Cannabis are sound choices for helping transition the world into a more sustainable ecosystem.
For now we wait and see
I’m not going to echo the cannabis activists from the past, saying that this June it will be legalized. I’m more of a pessimist when it comes to humanity’s ability to make smart decisions, however I do believe that cannabis stands a good chance to get re-scheduled after all the data has been analyzed.
The cannabis industry has grown significantly over the past six years and with an international ‘green flag’ for expansion, we can expect countries to follow suit and begin the process of global legalization. I’ll get back to after they WHO does their meeting with an Update, for now, go to the FDA website and submit your comments before April 23rd to help influence their position on the topic.