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MEXICO decriminalizes possession of small quantities of illicit drugs

May 16, 2009

HOLY SMOKE!!! one might be tempted to yelp, when one reads that the MEXICO legislatively  decriminalized the possession of small amounts (aka personal usage) of marijuana, cocaine,  heroin, and meth… 

Ironically, it seems, Mexico’s Premier Drug Warrior:  President Felipe Calderon, HIMSELF, introduced the legislation earlier this year.   According to Reuters, as of May 1st, both legislative houses of the Mexican Congress had approved of the bill,  and it was awaiting Calderon’s signature:  a foregone conclusion.

The new law allows users to posses up to 5 grams of  marijuana (.50) grams of cocaine, (50 mg) heroin, and small amounts of methamphetamine. 

But before your party posse packs up the pickup to move to “Baja-Lee”, you should strongly consider some other issues:  The new law significantly enhances penalties for those in possession of amounts  larger than those decriminalized (e.g. 6 grams of pot is BIG PROBLEM).  It likewise divests law enforcement from the Federal Judiciary to state and local law enforcement (i.e. Poncho the Pueblo policeman can haul you in) a situation heretofore preserved for the Federales.   Finally, even small time users, can be mandated to drug rehabilitation.  AND I doubt its the Betty Ford clinic!!!

Apparently there is a large constituency of anti-drug war activists who insists that the new law is simply another mechanism to INCREASE the assault against small time street dealers while ignoring the Tony Montanas. 

It is worth noting, however, that in 2006 almost identical legislation was proposed/passed by the Mexican congress.  At that time President Vicente Fox vetoed the measure at the last minute apparently under the pressure of the US.  Fox, has recently come out opposing drug prohibition,  requesting  decriminalization of ALL marijuana usage in Mexico. 

It is beyond the scope/desire of the BTA to engage in the politics involved in the action, but merely to inform. Alas, this is NOT the law—YET —and prudence suggests that its better to “wait and not inhale  too quickly!!!”

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