There is a slow-burning but steady and real awakening happening the world over. Forward-thinking countries on every continent are opening their eyes, changing their laws, and allowing people to enjoy the benefits of medical (and even recreational) marijuana on their territory. The Golden State is leading the charge in the US with their California medical marijuana card.
It is certainly an uneven awakening. Some countries are very liberal, some still very draconian. Even within the United States, certain states allow marijuanause by any person with a cannabis card, while others still vehemently prohibit it.
As an American, it is illegal to bring your medical marijuana out of your home state. If you have a California medical marijuana card, you can only consume your weed inside California. Federal authorities can arrest you for drug trafficking if you bring your weed out of state, and states without medical 420 laws can arres
t you for possession. If traveling from one medical marijuana-friendly state to another, it is not advisable to take your cannabis through a non-friendly state en route – it’s too dangerous. Some MMJ-friendly states recognize a 420 card from other MMJ-friendly states, but you will still usually need to register in the state you are visiting in order to purchase your weed there. Even traveling within states can be problematic, wi
th certain counties having different rules about the amount of cannabis a patient can have on them. Luckily, this is not an issue in California, where every county must abide by the states rules and allow at least the state minimum for every person with a California weed card.
Do not attempt to travel internationally with marijuana. Airports and airplanes are federal jurisdictions and bringing marijuana with you on a plane can easily get you arrested.
Taking your own medical marijuana abroad is not advisable, because as soon as you leave your state your medical 420 license does not entitle you to consume marijuana anymore. You can not consume cannabis in a country in which it is illegal, because each jurisdiction’s laws apply while you are in that specific jurisdiction. So even if you have a California medical marijuana card that does not, repeat NOT, mean you can safely score herb on your relaxing weekend break in Saudi Arabia!!
But while you cannot take your medical marijuana abroad with you, that does not mean you can never enjoy the benefits of weed while overseas.
Sure, there are many countries in which a few hours of relief from your glaucoma can get you heavily fined, thrown in prison, or (if you’re carrying a large enough quantity) executed. But there are also many countries where getting your medicine is easy, safe and hassle-free.
In a small but growing number of countries weed is fully legalized, although you cannot bring it in or out of these countries. Marijuana is legal and easily sourced (although usually restricted in the same ways that alcohol, gambling, etc. are) in Uruguay, Colombia, Holland, Canada, Czech Republic and certain states in Australia and India (where weed is illegal at a federal level, but legal at state level in many states, and in such states it is often government-run shops that sell ganja!).
In Spain, weed is not technically legal but exists in a grey area and, if consumed in designated ’Cannabis Clubs’, is not punished or prosecuted.
In a whole host of countries cannabis is illegal but has been decriminalized, so while it is technically illegal to purchase and consume weed, somewhat of a blind eye is turned to it if it is done subtly, and if you are caught your punishment will be minor or more likely non-existent.
In some countries weed is illegal in name only. In Cambodia it is easy and completely safe to openly purchase and use weed in public with no threat of criminal prosecution or police interference even though it is technically illegal.
Sadly, in many countries in the world it is a truly bad idea to consume cannabis, no matter how bad your glaucoma gets. Indonesia, Singapore (where citizens and permanent residents can be thrown in jail based on urine tests that show they consumed cannabis while on vacation in a country in which it is legal!), Saudi Arabia and Malaysia, have super-tight, draconian anti-cannabis laws, and anyone caught flouting the law is liable to be severely punished.
So, the world, and even America, is a patchwork of friendly and unfriendly jurisdictions. Most of the world is still shaking their fists at the sky, foaming at the mouth, and committing violence against individuals who harmlessly ingest a natural plant that makes their lives better. But every now again we find an oasis of good sense, in which people are free to ease their pain, live life on their own terms and, hell, crazy as it sounds, have some harmless fun!
So my advice to you is to find these glorious kingdoms where the streets are paved with, ahem, green, avail yourself of the laws – e.g., in Cali, you’ll need a California medical marijuana card if you want to consume MMJ – and bestow upon these marvelous places your hard-earned vacation dollars!