History is full of quirks in Jamaica. Somethings happen for no good reason. Just ask Jimmy Buffet, who was once innocently flying his ‘boat plane’ off the coast of Jamaica, to do a little down time fly fishing. The Jamaica military however… thought he was a drug smuggler. So, always looking to do the sensible thing, they decided that trying to blow his plane out of the water, was the prudent course of action. Jimmy now refers to this as his “Jamaica Mistaika“. While the islands crushing poverty may motivate the fastest man on earth, Jamaica’s own Asafa Powell to out run (100 meter world record holder 9.74 ) some of these temptations, it drives others in a completely different direction.
… Nearly 15,000 pounds (6,795 kilograms) of marijuana have gone up in smoke in Jamaica.
Authorities say they also destroyed about 75 pounds (34 kilograms) of hash oil during Saturday’s burning operation at an undisclosed police site in the Kingston area.
Jamaica is the Caribbean region’s largest producer and exporter of marijuana. Plants are grown mostly on mountain hillsides or hidden among other crops. [source]
While their national flag gives some insights as to the overall economic pessimism that has existed on the island for a very long time. Jamaica’s Flag colors: Black, Green and Gold. Black -represents the struggle of the islands working class, green – represents lush tropical vegetation, gold represents unending sunshine.
Now call me silly… but if I was running that backwater banana factory of a county, I would think that planting marijuana for the U.S. pharmaceutical market would be a pretty forward thinking idea. Amsale Maryam agrees. Amsale from the Jamaican Association for Development Agencies, who was giving a lecture on the topic at a J.A.D.D.A assembly stated…
“That’s the approach we should adopt because marijuana cultivation could bring in a lot of money. The pharmaceutical industry needs marijuana because it’s an ingredient in several treatments.”
18 states in the US; and Jamaica’s biggest commercial partner, have legalized medicinal marijuana, and four of them; Colorado, Rhode Island, California, and New Mexico give distinct exemptions for the distribution of medical marijuana. In California alone they spend over $200 million a year on the plant, just for medical use.
As one old Jamaican farmer recently stated in a press article; he grows and exports marijuana illegally because he has no other options. He thinks that the decriminalization of marijuana would go a long way to change to the fortune of this country and vastly increase the G.D.P.
As this reporter from Whales notices… burning freshly grown marijuana is not as easy as it sound.