The lower house of the Parliament of the Oriental Republic of the Uruguay approved yesterday a bill that legalizes and regularizes the production and commercialization of marijuana. The ruling Wide Front (left) supported the bill without fissures, while the right-wing opposition voted against.
Under the new law the production and commercialization of cannabis will be under supervision of a state organism, which will issues licenses and voluntary registry of consumers, who will be entitled to purchase up to 40 grams per month.
Previously consumption was legally tolerated but production and trade were not regulated, much as it happens in many states of Europe. This allows mafias to operate outside legality with no guarantees for consumers and no taxation for the state.
Personally I think that the law is still too restrictive and that cannabis should be subject to similar legislation as alcohol and tobacco. Also caffeine should be included in this category of socially tolerated drugs and not sold as mere "harmless" food, being clearly an addictive drug (something that can't be said of marijuana, whose addictiveness is at best very weak, nearing zero).
I am particularly concerned by the creation of such "consumer registry", which is a clear violation of privacy and is potentially stigmatizing.