Segments in this Video

End of Marijuana Prohibition (01:54)


President Jose “Pepe” Mujica is synonymous with the end of marijuana prohibition in Uruguay, which occurred during his administration in 2013. The law is an attempt to curb the illegal drug trade that has destabilized the South American country for decades.

What Uruguay's Law Allows (04:40)

Uruguay’s law permits the setting up of registered cannabis clubs with up to 45 members; each club can grow up to 99 plants. Individuals can grow up to six plants at home. The third way to legally register is through a pharmacy, which allows the purchase of up to 10 grams a month. Citizens can only register in one category.

Visiting President Mujica (04:21)

Everyday citizens share their opinions about legalization. Correspondent Paeder King heads to the outskirts of Montevideo to Mujica’s modest farmhouse, where he lived even when he was president. Mujica believes legalization is pragmatic since repressive policies do little to curb illegal narcotrafficking. King also interviews members of a cannabis club who echo the president’s sentiments.

Medical Applications (03:31)

Prohibition leads to increases in violence and the prison population without solving the problem. There has not been a single recorded death attributed to marijuana anywhere in the world, according to Dr. Julia Galzerano. The plant has shown promise as a treatment for neurological disorders, chronic pain, depression and anxiety, she says.

Making a Dent in Poverty? (03:23)

Mujica discusses his desire to improve life in poor neighborhoods where most narcotrafficking used to take place. A barrio resident praises Mujica’s policies and observes that illegal activity has declined. Legalization allows growers to set up legitimate businesses, and one such grower gives King a tour of his operation.

Smoking at Work (02:05)

Marcel Renaud works at a software company where employees smoke cannabis in the office. He has developed an app that helps growers monitor and tend to their product remotely. He praises the legalization law for allowing more freedom and lifting the stigma around recreational marijuana use.

Marijuana in Prison (03:20)

Marijuana may be legal on the street, but it is not yet allowed in state prisons. Rieles Prison Director Luis Parodi breaks down demographics of his facility’s population and advocates legalization as a way of mitigating the influence of narcotraffickers. Prisoner Rodrigo Boledo describes cannabis as a peaceful drug that inmates should be allowed to use.

Other Countries Following Suit (02:12)

Uruguay is the first country to fully legalize recreational use of marijuana, but many others are moving away from strict prohibition. Canada announced legalization plans in 2016, and 23 other countries have regulated the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes. Mujica believes it is possible to completely eliminate the illegal trafficking of marijuana.

Credits: What in the World (Series 2): Uruguay (00:45)

Credits: What in the World (Series 2): Uruguay

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What in the World (Series 2): Uruguay

Part of the Series : What in the World, Series 2
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Uruguayan President Jose Mujica refused to stay in the luxurious presidential state house, instead opting to stay at his wife’s farmhouse on the outskirts of Montevideo. His unorthodox administration oversaw the legalization of recreational cannabis use in 2013. Correspondent Paeder King visits the president, cannabis users and everyday citizens to assess whether legalization is working in this South American country. 



Length: 27 minutes

Item#: BVL182996

ISBN: 978-1-64481-842-8

Copyright date: ©2017

Closed Captioned

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