Is marijuana legal in Mexico?
Actually, cannabis is partly legal in Mexico for personal use. As of the 21st of August 2019, the Mexican government has decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use.
However, decriminalization isn’t the same thing as legalization. It means that, rather than arresting or fining anybody possessing marijuana, the authorities recommend that the person seek help from a drug rehabilitation center.
The maximum amount of weed that anyone can possess is five grams. Anything over that no longer constitutes a personal amount and can lead to a fine or imprisonment.
In 2015, the Mexican constitutional court made a groundbreaking ruling, declaring it unconstitutional to prohibit people from growing marijuana for personal use.
2021 saw a Supreme Court vote pass 8-3 to legalize marijuana. Once officials have finished correcting and fine-tuning the proposed legalization bill, you can even plant those sour diesel seeds in your garden without a permit.
So, while the government technically legalized marijuana, officially it isn’t. Until such a time as the government officially implements the bill and lawmakers rewrite the penal code, marijuana is (for all practical purposes) illegal.
So, is cannabis legal in Mexico? The simple answer is no.
Delays in the bill to fully legalize marijuana use
The significant delay in the Mexican weed legalization process has been the passing of the bill. While, in black-and-white terms, the Supreme Court law already voted, the document that will officially legalize weed is still under deliberation.
Government officials have given various reasons for the delay. As President Lopez Obrador stated, the main reason is that the bill was full of mistakes that could not be left unfixed.
According to him, the main problems were matters of inconsistency rather than something more serious regarding the law itself. To quote, the issues involved are “matters of form and not of substance.”
Understandable skepticism from a country torn by drug wars
Some legal analysts believe that the delays are the result of skepticism by certain members of the government. While it may be frustrating, it’s understandable that government officials may be nervous about officially legalizing the drug.
After all, Mexico has been fighting a war against drug trafficking and abuse for many decades.
It must be a little scary for them to suddenly legalize a substance that’s among the things they’ve been fighting for such a long time. This overthinking may be subconscious and might impact how long it takes to complete the bill.
The overall process mainly depends on the bill’s correction.
Positive Consequences of Decriminalization and Legalization
While the official change of the Mexican marijuana law might take a while, it promises excellent results overall.
Since Mexico decriminalized marijuana for personal use, the USA’s Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has reported a significant decline in illegal marijuana smuggling across Mexican borders.