Personal use of marijuana is a human rights issue. At least that's what Mexican Supreme Court justices say.
Justices ruled Wednesday individuals have the right to grow and distribute pot for personal use. Now, this doesn't get rid of current drug laws on the books — that is probably still a long way off — but it is the first step in marijuana legalization in Mexico. (Video via Al Jazeera)
In an 88-page opinion, one of the justices cited one's right to partake in activities that don't hurt other people as reasoning for the decision.
The move could show Mexico is a little desperate for a better way to fight the drug war in its country. By many accounts, the American-backed war on drugs hasn't worked. With many politicians in the pockets of drug cartels, police corruption and thousands of deaths since the war began, trying to move some of the cartel control over marijuana to the government could be a good idea. (Video via RT)
And Mexico has been pressured to loosen its drug laws since states in America began to legalize medical and recreational marijuana.
It's not just the U.S., either: Uruguay legalized marijuana in 2013 and Chileans have planted cannabis for medicinal use.
But in a country that's largely Catholic and socially conservative, the battle to legalization likely isn't going to be easy. The Mexican government, Roman Catholic Church and health officials are all against legalization. However, Mexico's president has hinted that he could get on board because of the inconsistencies between U.S. and Mexican policies.
And unfortunately, as far as really putting a dent in illegal drug trafficking, marijuana legalization is just a drop in the bucket, in Mexico at least. In 2011, one poll found only 2 percent of Mexican citizens said they had smoked pot in the past year.
This video includes images from Getty Images.