In what could be a groundbreaking change for Europe, Italy’s lawmakers have taken the first step towards pot legalization last July. After all, according to a poll conducted by Ipsos, 60 percent of Italy’s population is in favor of pot legalization.
The Intergrupo Parlamentare Cannabis Legale agreed on a provisional text to legalize marijuana consumption, cultivation, production, and sale under several conditions. It would allow Italians to grow pot at home or as members of “cannabis clubs,” where a maximum of 50 people can cultivate weed as a group and share the product. However, selling it to the general public is still strictly prohibited. The text would also make cannabis state-controlled, giving the government authority to regulate the sale of licenses to produce and distribute marijuana, hence generating tax revenues.
218 members of the parliament signed the text, including members of the Five Star Movement and the Greens. Even several lawmakers from Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s Democratic Party signed the provisional text, including Robert Giachetti, vice president of the Chamber of Deputies.
“We think that in Europe and in Italy, it makes sense to work to follow the example of countries that first switched to a system of full legal regulation of the production, sale, and consumption of cannabis, adapting its features to our social and legal context,” the group’s manifesto states.
However, not everyone is happy with the measure.
One of the opponents is Matteo Salvini, leader of the Northern League, a far right party with broad support. He compared marijuana legalization with prostitution legalization, saying that the latter does not harm, “which is not the case with cannabis.”
In your opinion, what changes can pot legalization in Italy do to the rest of Europe? Voice your opinions in the comments section below – your opinion matters to the nation.