And President Juan Manuel Santos, as promised, did it live when he gave his John Hancock to Colombia’s medical marijuana law on Tuesday. Broadcast on a national Colombia telecast, this legalization effort was the first of its highly publicized kind.
Now, Colombia will work to set up a licensed, formal medical marijuana program must like neighboring Uruguay’s and the model state, Colorado’s. The televising of this decree shows how big a deal this issue has become all over the world, and particularly in drug-riddled South America.
For Colombia, it’s a long time coming, as medical marijuana was actually “authorized” in 1986, no infrastructure or true effort to create an industry has occurred till now in a nation known for its rich cocaine and marijuana trade:
In a nationally televised address, Santos announced it would be fully legal to grow, process, import and export cannabis and its derivatives for medical and scientific use.
“This decree allows licenses to be granted for the possession of seeds, cannabis plants and marijuana,” he said from the presidential palace.
“It places Colombia in the group of countries that are at the forefront… in the use of natural resources to fight disease.”
He added that the measure “does not go against our international commitments on drug control.” [Yahoo]
Of course, Colombia’s breakthrough isn’t a shock nor has it garnered anything close to Uruguay’s landmark legalization effort two years ago. This law has been a foregone conclusion for a while, the nation has far bigger drug concerns than marijuana, and as weird as it may be to say, medical marijuana being legalized just isn’t really a shock or a big deal these days.
But it’s still awesome news. And ss we enter 2016, many countries and states figure to mirror this effort. Hopefully more of the revolution will be televised: