Smoke wafts through the air outside Mexico’s Senate building, as protestors light up in a garden run by activists who want legalized marijuana use.
Mexico’s Supreme Court last year ruled that laws prohibiting cannabis use were unconstitutional, but the court set a deadline for the government: October 2019.
Over a year later, the government is yet to draft legislation that would formally legalize marijuana. This inaction has sparked activists like Jesus Ribera, to protest outside the Senate.
“It’s a real shame and an embarrassment that senators have not been able to make marijuana legalization happen. They have not been able to debate it. Their job is to legislate and protect our rights, and in a year and half, they haven’t done it. It’s not worth asking for more time because our rights continue to be violated, the constitution continues to be violated, there continues to be a problem constitutionally.”
The cannabis seeds were sown in the garden in February, and people are allowed to smoke for 30 minutes at a time. Police appear to be turning a blind eye, but it is unclear how long this will last.
Advocates say legalization would restrict marijuana as a source of income for violent gangs.