Reporting slider — 24 July 2014

24 July 2014.  Santiago, Chile

Today Senator Isabelle Allende Bussi, who is President of the Chilean Senate, introduced a motion to modify the law in Chile to permit people to grow and use marijuana for personal use and for “therapeutic and spiritual” reasons.  Supporting the motion are Senators Fulvio Rossi, Alfonso de Urresti, Carlos Montes, and Juan Pablo Letelier.

Senator Allende said that it was fundamental to move forward on a subject that respects fundamental human rights and individual freedom.

The Senator said, “It is important to legislate on this matter and regarding  fundamental rights we must catch up to be a a modern and inclusive society.”

The law would permit an individual to have up to three plants in the flowering stage of growth as long as it was for personal use.  The individual would be required to register those with the agriculture department.  The law would prohibit the sale of these plants to any third party.

Currently law 20,000 in Chile allows the use and cultivation of marijuana for personal use, but it does not spell out how much marijuana a person can have.  The decision whether marijuana is for personal use is left to the discretion of the judge.

Many people in Chile are locked up for marijuana possession. The Bachelet government has already taken a step in the direction of changing the law by assigning a commission to study whether marijuana should be classified in a different category than cocaine and heroin, which is where it sits today.

The government in Chile wants to shift its emphasis from individual tokers to  large scale traffickers.  Because Chile borders Peru, Bolivia, and Argentina much cocaine and marijuana comes across the border.  Just this week con artists tricked a whole kids football team into transporting several hundred kilos of marijuana into the country, telling the kids they would go to Chile to participate in a football game.  The marijuana was hidden in their van.  The con artist was arrested and the marijuana seized.  Much of the marijuana that is sold in Chile is grown in Paraguay.

For those outside Chile who might not know these persons, Senator Allende is the daughter of the late President Salvador Allende, whose government came under tank and air attack in 1973. The President committed suicide as the attack was underway, and the dictator Pinochet came to power. Juan Pablo Letelier is the son of Orlando Letelier, a Chilean politician and diplomat who was blown up by a car bomb in Washington, D.C by the Pinochet government.  Senator Rossi is not as well-known internationally, but he has caught the attention and even amusement of the people here in Chile.  Senator Rossi admits to smoking marijuana for pleasure.  When he said that, a right-wing politician tried to pass a rule in the congress prohibiting anyone from working as a senator if they smoked marijuana. He and that politician have since come to terms agreeing that the status quo situation needs to change and have appeared to together to express that.


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(3) Readers Comments

  1. Maximum individual freedom for all the world’s people with harm to none. Cannabis has 10,000 years of shared history with humanity. Cannabis never should have been banned. Best wishes to the people of Chile.

  2. first: “the son of Orlando Letelier, a Chilean politician and diplomat who was blown up by a car bomb in Washington, D.C by the Pinochet government.”
    in fact the killing was orchestrated by a CIA agent, with the knowledge of CIA and of others in washington including the white house

    Cannabis on its own merits should be legal like coffee tea or chocolate. In fact it is completely non toxic. If someone wants to grow 50 plants and sell surplus to his neeighbors, it is really no affair of the state’s.

  3. Time to catch up with the USA and Uruguay

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