3 Years Of Legal Marijuana in Canada: Pros, Cons & What The US Can Learn

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So much has happened in the three years and a month since Oct. 17, 2018 that you could be forgiven for forgetting the biggest news of that day: the first day of marijuana legalization in Canada. America’s slightly more affable and polite neighbor to the north was the second country in the world after Uruguay to allow adults to possess, use, grow, and purchase cannabis — but the first to encourage what could be called “an industry,” welcoming international investors onto to Canadian Stock Exchange, and allowing the construction of titanic greenhouses big enough to get everybody on the continent buzzed. Though many Americans know Canadian cannabis mostly through the billion-dollar publicly traded companies, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government initially set out to accomplish three things with legalization, (none of them to do with business): Keep weed away from kids; “keep profits out of the pockets of criminals” (that’s what a Bitcoin wallet is for); and to “protect public health and safety” by allowing full-grown adults to buy legal pot, from neither kids nor criminals. Three years on, with top Senate Democrats pitching federal marijuana legalization in the United States to their colleagues and more U.S. states legalizing cannabis themselves, how’s all that going? Cannabis Now consulted with experts and crunched the numbers. Here’s what we found: a project still in motion, with some appreciable results in some areas, that still badly fails to deliver in others. Public Health: A Win-Win-Win Buying weed on the “traditional market” is usually fine. Over the past 50 or so years of cannabis prohibition, the drug remained one of the safest ways to catch a buzz, with no recorded deaths — but can be sometimes dangerous, as the vape-lung crisis of late 2019 in the United States demonstrated. Sixty-eight people died and thousands were…

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