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Marijuana Legalization in Canada

Marijuana LED growing

Marijuana legalization in Canada has been an issue almost a century back from today, and finally reached its conclusion earlier this year. Recreational marijuana is legal for use, growing, and possession in the entire country.

Origins

Marijuana was first banned in Canada in 1923. Fifteen years later, people’s perception of marijuana was influenced by the media’s depiction of it as life-destroying and variously damaging for the brain. In 1938 Ottawa introduced a law prohibiting people from growing marijuana without an official health department permit. The presence of cannabis crops for research purposes in the capital and near Montreal was destroyed. In 1983, the attempts to restrain people from using recreational marijuana continued. Media played a crucial role again, by targeting teens with anti-marijuana attempts.

Since October 17 2018, people are celebrating the ability to purchase recreational marijuana legally. Still, there are a few established rules to be followed, even though you can purchase and use marijuana all over the country.

How old must a person be?

All adults are allowed to buy, grow, use, and possess recreational marijuana but the legal age is 19 in the entire country. Quebec and Alberta, where the legal age is 18, make an exception.

Where can a person buy marijuana?

Recreational marijuana is not to be sold in the same location as alcohol and tobacco. The supplies may be limited, at least at the beginning. Consumers must purchase the drug from retailers regulated by provinces and territories or, if this option is not available, from federally licensed producers.

Why was marijuana legalized?

One reason is that marijuana is hurting the youth. It is a common misconception that legalizing marijuana will increase the rate of teen use because as of now, it is fairly easy for an underage person to get marijuana. The reason is no other but the fact that marijuana use is illegal. The age of the person is of no importance to a dealer, and one will never ask for an ID when is selling loosely. Legalization will help to secure much more controlled sales into adult-only stores and will reduce the potential use of underage people.

According to a survey by Monitoring the Future, for 40 years the answer of how easy it would be for high school seniors to find marijuana has been ‘easy’. However, after marijuana was legalized in four states the answer ‘easy’ dropped below 80%.

On June 20th Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made an announcement on Twitter, claiming: “It’s been too easy for our kids to get marijuana – and for criminals to reap the profits. Today, we change that. Our plan to legalize & regulate marijuana just passed the Senate.”

Cannabis legalization is also expected to better the economy and create an industry worth more than $4 billion in Canada.

Traveling in and out of Canada

Traveling in and out of the country with cannabis possession is completely prohibited and could lead to facing criminal charges. Traveling across international borders is also impossible, even if you are going to a state where marijuana is legal.

Canada is the second country in the world to legalize recreational marijuana. Using recreational marijuana is allowed in nine states in the United States and the District of Columbia. Medical marijuana is legal in some form in 30 states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Legalizing marijuana has a lot of advantages, and marijuana use is widespread enough as it is, whether it is prohibited or not. People are inevitably going to smoke and find ways to do so, legally or not. It is always more beneficial and safer for something to be sold and consumed openly as it is in the Netherlands and Canada.  In Colorado it is sold in stores and bought by upper middle class citizens with no cases of overuse or abuse. In California cases of offences dropped across all categories of underage offenders.

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