Mexican Court Says “Si” To Legal Weed

The jokes, they write themselves. NYT, a few minutes ago.

The Mexican Supreme Court opened the door to legalizing marijuana on Wednesday, delivering a pointed challenge to the nation’s strict substance abuse laws and adding its weight to the growing debate in Latin America over the costs and consequences of the war against drugs.

The vote by the court’s criminal chamber declared that individuals should have the right to grow and distribute marijuana for their personal use. While the ruling does not strike down current drug laws, it lays the groundwork for a wave of legal actions that could ultimately rewrite them, proponents of legalization say.

The decision reflects a changing dynamic in Mexico, where for decades the American-backed war on drugs has produced much upheaval but few lasting victories. Today, the flow of drugs to the United States continues, along with the political corruption it fuels in Mexico. The country, dispirited by the ceaseless fight with traffickers, remains engulfed in violence.

All kidding aside, the legal shift parallels an increasing skepticism in Latin America about Washington’s tough on crime drug policies. Such skepticism may help fuel real reform in our criminal justice and drug policy systems, which will help to ameliorate and eventually dismantle current systems of mass incarceration. 


“Public Health Emergency” in Baltimore

First quarter 2014, heroin deaths in Baltimore: 14. In 2015, the number spiked to 39.

Reason: a lot of heroin is now being laced with fentanyl, a much more potent and deadly drug.

The Sun:

“Fentanyl-laced heroin is killing individuals in our city,” Dr. Leana Wen, Baltimore City Health Commissioner, said in a statement. “Nearly every day in Baltimore, one person dies from drug overdose. This is a public health emergency. It is our obligation to educate and save lives.”
City officials formed a Mayor’s Heroin Prevention and Treatment Task Force earlier this year to stem overdose deaths, which have been surging.

Maryland health officials also have formed a task force and members have been visiting all corners of the city to learn about the problem. And officials from around the country report similar problems in fentanyl and overdoses.

This is not a Baltimore problem, or even a state problem at this point. It’s a national problem, and all levels of government must be harnessed to help address it.

And the next politician who says we need tougher criminal drug laws gets sent to their room with no dinner.