Since legalizing marijuana last summer, Uruguay was named The Economist’s 2013 Country of the Year, Uruguay President Jose Mujica (pictured above with Aerosmith) was named TIME’s Man of the Year, and Uruguay has–likewise–become arguably the hippest country around.
Uruguay’s hipness starts right at the top with Mujica–a man who’s salary is less than most Investment Bankers–and still donates 90% of his income to charitable causes. And of course, there’s the weed thing: by making Uruguay the first country to really legalize marijuana, and Mujica made the ballsiest, liberal move a President has ever made when it comes to modern drug reform.
And while Uruguay’s legal cannabis market won’t open till late this year, Mujica continues to take their weed policy even higher. The latest in Uruguay’s weed evolution: the country will let its jailed prisoners smoke medical marijuana “if a doctor says it will benefit their health.”
So just like with normal citizens, prisoners will be able to get a prescription for marijuana from a doctor. And quite frankly, it make sense: jails will likely become much more peaceful places with stoned, relaxed inmates. Cannabis equals reduced crime, and when you’re locked up for 5-10, smoking weed and reading books makes that time go a lot smoother.
It’s just the latest, awesome weed-thing Mujica and Uruguay has done. Of course, there’s one, small caveat: Uruguay may not be able to meet the demand for its weed. They’re shown interest in importing it from Canada, and as of now, no one has ever legally purchased marijuana in Uruguay.
Unless Mujica is pulling the greatest PR-stunt of all time (he’s not), that will change by the end of the year. In other cool Uruguay-weed-related news, VICE just aired an interview with Mujica–where the President says the following, Zenmaster quote:
“If I needed drugs to feel free I’d be toast,” Mujica, a former guerilla leader, says. “My liberty is here,” he says pointing vigorously at his head.
Mujica is simply the man. And here’s that video.