Late Wednesday night, following months of intensive debate and negotiation, the Uruguayan House of Representatives passed a bill to legalize marijuana. If approved by the Senate, President José Mujica will certainly sign it, at which point Uruguay will become the first country in the world to replace its marijuana prohibition law with a legal regulatory system.
Uruguay’s bold move does much more than just follow in the footsteps of Colorado and Washington state, which last November became the first political jurisdictions in the world to approve the legalization of marijuana.
It provides, significantly, a model for how to engage in debate over marijuana policy in a mature and responsible way. When President Mujica first issued his proposal last June, he made clear that he welcomed vigorous debate over both its merits and the particulars. International experts were invited…
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