I think it’s generally accepted in today’s society, particularly in regards to the attitudes of young people, that in the not too distant future there will be two major differences in our society – both same sex marriage and marijuana will be legal.
Debates over the legalization of both have raged now for decades and, as time has marched forward, conservative attitudes have died off with the useless corpses dragging them around, and we are edging closer and closer to an ideal of equality, both in love and substance.
But alas, that day has still not arrived in a lot of countries, including Australia, and so when laws pass governing the rights of LGBTQ people and weed smokers (both medical and recreational) in Western countries similar to our own, we pay close attention knowing full well that we’ll more than likely follow in their footsteps in the years to come.
One said country with which we are closely associated is Canada. A fellow Commonwealth country, Canada has been somewhat more progressive with its attitudes, particularly towards marijuana use, having had legal medical marijuana for over a decade already. However, with those changes in attitudes and laws has also come a realisation in recent years that government and big business can position themselves to take advantage of the legalised status of cannabis, with marijuana expected to be a $1 billion industry in the country by 2024.
Recent changes to the laws surrounding medical marijuana in Canada seem to now favour big producers of the drug, rather than the patients using the medicine. And with recreational marijuana use recently legalised in several states in the US, both the social status of the drug and the legalisation of its use has become more and more hazy (pardon the pun).
VICE has been publishing a new documentary series called Canadian Cannabis for the last few months that investigates those changes in both Canada and the US, and analyses the impact that legalisation and government intervention has had on both use and commercialisation of the drug.
Hosted by Fucked Up frontman and media personality, the incredibly affable Damian Abraham (himself a legit medical marijuana user), the series looks at several tears of the cannabis trade in Canada and the US, and manages to do a really fair and balanced analyses of all parties involved.
Particularly confronting in the series is the importance the drug has for medical patients, particularly with regards to children, and really puts the drug’s main benefits under the spotlight.
You can check out episode one below, and then head over to VICE to watch the rest of the series.