Israel Cultivates Decriminalization for ‘Personal Use’

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Already light-years ahead of the rest of the civilized world with regards to marijuana research, Israel’s Minister of Public Security announced today he’s rolling out a new plan to decriminalize the small-time possession and personal use of cannabis.

Currently illegal for all but limited medical purposes since the mid-90s; Minister Gilad Erdan is hoping to eradicate those senseless and costly arrests for personal marijuana possession. If passed, Erdan’s plan would establish Israel as the first country in the Middle East to decriminalize the personal possession of up to 15 g of cannabis.

Israeli magazine Haaretz reported that the plan calls for criminal prosecution only in extreme and persistent cases. The first time someone is caught by police using marijuana, it has been recommended that they receive a fine of approximately $265 U.S. dollars. If they are caught a second time, the fine doubles, and so on. If caught for a fourth time the user could be criminally prosecuted, but this would only be in cases of people smoking in public.

“The goal of the plan is to prevent significant harm to regular people who have no criminal past, Erdan said.

Dr. Raphael Mechoulam Medical marijuana advocate

The God Father of THC, Dr. Raphael Mechoulam

The news of decriminalization comes on the heels of police presenting statistics to lawmakers, which point out a sharp 30% drop in law enforcement against marijuana users since 2010. The stats also showed that only 188 people were arrested for smoking weed, which is a 56% drop since 2010.

More welcoming of medical marijuana than recreational consumption, Israel is the home of the father of modern medical marijuana, Dr. Raphael Mechoulam of the Hebrew University’s Faculty of Medicine. It was Dr. Mechoulam who first performed breakthrough research on the plant’s many cannabinoids, he also identified and isolated the psychoactive compound tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Provided the new policy is approved by Israel’s Knesset Committee and receives approval from Prime Minister Netanyahu, Erdan believes the new policy could take effect within 90 days of approval.

Mazel tov!

About Author

Born in Long Beach, raised on the central coast: I surf, dab, burn, and blog – though not necessarily in that order. I'm a husband, a father and a lifelong consumer of connoisseur grade weed. I don't drink alcohol or consume any other "drugs." I consider myself to be living proof that weed is not a gateway drug. If it were, I'd be in some serious trouble. Instead, as a 50-year-old ex-realtor that has been smoking weed for nearly 80% of my life (just did the math) ... I can only say, marijuana is safer than prescription pills or alcohol could ever hope to be for calming what stirs the savage beast.

2 Comments

  1. Israel is ahead of the world in everything because of the brilliance of the Jews. I just wish I could get my hands on their homegrown strains of cannabis, particularly the medical strains.

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