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Brazil Minister Proposes Legalization of Marijuana

September 14th, 2009

marijuanaBrazil’s Environment Minister Carlos Minc called on the country’s Supreme Court to imitate Argentina and decriminalize possession of drugs by adults for personal consumption.

“We beat Argentina 3 to 1 in the World Cup qualifiers but in other issues we are loosing and bad. In Argentina judges decriminalized the use of marijuana”, said Mind during a Sunday visit to the ecologic park Chapada dos Veadeiros in the central state of Goiás.

“This is a match we are losing with the Argentines,” insisted the minister during an open day at the park which included musical shows.

Last August 25th the Argentine Supreme Court declared unconstitutional criminalizing adults in possession of a minimum quantity of marijuana for personal use and with no risk for third parties, thus giving preference to the right to privacy.

The Supreme Court ruling also called on the political establishment to agree on a state policy on drugs to combat the illicit trafficking of narcotics and adopt preventive health and educational measures.

The ruling however did not decriminalize the traffic or trading of drugs and the suppliers involved in the lead case of the five youngsters caught with marijuana – and later released – have been jailed.

The message from the Argentine court is quite clear: having drugs in small quantities, with no ostentations or risk for third parties, is a case of individual privacy, a personal issue and therefore not punishable.

Mexico also passed similar legislation last month and there’s a strong move along the Latinamerican continent to change the emphasis on the drugs war.

Several former Latinamerican presidents (conservatives and liberals) have spoken openly in favor of a certain degree of consumption legalization and the decisions in Argentina and Mexico point in that direction.

Brazil could be the next country to join the club, and Minc’s comments could be interpreted as trial balloons.


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