Things That Matter

Mexico Releases Guidelines For Medical Marijuana Regulation In Major Step

Update January 14, 2021

Mexico is making major moves in their quest to legalize marijuana. The latest step was the health department releasing rules on how to regulate medicinal marijuana.

Mexico is that much closer to a legalized marijuana market.

The future marijuana market in Mexico is set to become the largest legalized marijuana market in the world, based on population. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador signed the latest regulations in a major move toward the overall goal to legalize marijuana in Mexico. Mexico’s current marijuana reform includes recreational.

The newly approved rules will now allow for companies to start research into medicinal marijuana products. Companies who wish to do this must receive permission from the Mexican health regulator, COFEPRIS, and the research has to be done in independent laboratories.

The rules also state that marijuana can be imported for these purposes. However, it will be prohibited to export Mexican-grown marijuana that would be legally grown in teh country.

Original: There has been a global movement to legalize cannabis beyond medicinal usage. Advocates are pushing to recreational use as well as opening up government money to allow for research into marijuana and hemp. Some states in the U.S. have legalized recreational marijuana including California and Illinois. Mexico keeps getting closer and closer to eventually passing a bill to legalize marijuana.

Mexico missed another deadline to pass a bill legalizing marijuana.

Credit: Margo Amala / Unsplash

Mexican officials were making progress on a new bill that would legalize cannabis across the country regardless of THC levels. This means both marijuana and hemp would be legal in the Latin American country bordering the U.S. The move would mean that the U.S. would be the lone country in the North American bloc without federal legalization of marijuana.

Uruguay was the first country in the world to legalize marijuana.

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Uruguay legalized marijuana in 2017 becoming pioneers in the legal and social experiments surrounding cannabis legalization. Most notably, businesses had to figure out how to make money from the sale of cannabis while adhering to international banking regulations that make it illegal to handle money made from selling drugs. Several pharmacies in the country that were selling marijuana were told to stop selling the product or close their accounts.

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s political party is behind the bill fighting for legalization.

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In 2018, the National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) wrote legislation to legalize marijuana. The motion, submitted by Senator Olga Sánchez Cordero, calls out the prohibition of marijuana and how it leads to the violence Mexico has experienced.

“Today, the nation has taken the decision to change,” Sen. Sánchez Cordero told her colleagues the day the motion was filed. “We don’t want more deaths. It will be a major contribution to bringing peace to our beloved country.”

AMLO has since come out against the legalization of marijuana.

Credit: Wesley Gibbs / Unsplash

“We are analyzing everything that will help ensure that there is no violence, that consumption does not increase, and that at the same time medical attention is guaranteed to those who require it,” AMLO said during a presidential conference.

COVID-19 has put a stop to the bill for now but it isn’t done yet.

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The March legislation session was canceled because of the pandemic meaning that they will miss the April 30 deadline to pass the bill. The next legislative session is from Sept. 1 to Dec. 15. Even if the bill is passed then, it could take years for Mexico to set up the appropriate systems to regulate and sell marijuana.

READ: A Man Spent A Month In Jail After Feds Thought He Was Carrying 3,000 pounds of ‘Marijuana,’ Lab Results Showed It Was Hemp

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Another International Brand Has Been Accused Of Copying Indigenous Mexican Designs

Entertainment

Another International Brand Has Been Accused Of Copying Indigenous Mexican Designs

DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP via Getty Images

Although it comes as no surprise, it’s still as frustrating as ever that an international fashion brand has ripped off traditional designs of Indigenous cultures. This time, it’s an Australian label that appears to have copied the designs of Mexico’s Mazatec community.

Although the company has already pulled the allegedly copied dress, the damage appears to have been done as many are rightfully outraged at their blatant plagiarism.

Australia’s Zimmermann brand has been accused of copying designs from Mexico’s Indigenous community.

Mazatec people from the Mexican state of Oaxaca have expressed their outrage over yet another attack on their traditions. They claim that an Australian company – Zimmermann – has copied a Mazatec huipil design to make its own tunic dress. The dress, which was part of the company’s 2021 Resort collection and retailed for USD $850, has since been pulled from the company’s website due to the criticism.

Zimmermann is an Australian fashion house that has stores across the U.S., England, France, and Italy. While the huipil is a loose-fitting tunic commonly worn by both Indigenous and non-Indigenous women across Mexico.

It’s hard to argue that the brand didn’t deliberately copy the Oaxacan design.

Credit: Francoise CAVAZZANA/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

When you look at the Zimmermann tunic dress alongside a traditional huipil, it’s hard not to see the resemblance. The cut of the Zimmermann dress, the birds and flowers embroidered on it and its colors all resemble a traditional Mazatec huipil. 

Changes made to the original design – the Zimmermann dress sits above the knees and unlike a huipil is not intended to be worn with pants or a skirt – are disrespectful of the Mazatac culture and world view.

The Oaxaca Institute of Crafts also condemned Zimmermann and called on the brand to clarify the origin of its design.

For their part, Zimmermann has pulled the dress and issued an apology.

Zimmermann subsequently issued a statement on social media, acknowledging that the tunic dress was inspired by huipiles from Oaxaca

“Zimmermann acknowledges that the paneled tunic dress from our current Swim collection was inspired by what we now understand to be a traditional garment from the Oaxaca region in Mexico,” it said.

“We apologize for the usage without appropriate credit to the cultural owners of this form of dress and for the offense this has caused. Although the error was unintentional, when it was brought to our attention today, the item was immediately withdrawn from all Zimmermann stores and our website. We have taken steps to ensure this does not happen again in future.”

However, it’s far from the first time that an international brand has profited off of Indigenous designs.

Unfortunately, international fashion companies ripping off traditional garments and designs – especially those of Indigenous cultures – is far too common. Several major companies have been accused of plagiarism within the last year.

In fact, the problem has become so widespread that Mexico created a government task force to help find and denounce similar plagiarism in the future. Among the other designers/brands that have been denounced for the practice are Isabel Marant, Carolina Herrera, Mango and Pippa Holt.

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The President Of Mexico Has Tested Positive For Covid-19 After A Year Of Downplaying The Virus

Things That Matter

The President Of Mexico Has Tested Positive For Covid-19 After A Year Of Downplaying The Virus

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Since the very beginning of the worldwide Coronavirus pandemic, Mexico’s President Andres Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) has largely downplayed the severity of the crisis. Despite record-setting deaths across Mexico, the president continued to hold large rallies, rarely uses face masks and continues to be very hands on with his supporters. Many of his detractors grouped him in with Donald Trump and Brazil’s Jaír Bolsonaro in his poor response to the pandemic.

Mexico’s President AMLO has tested positive for Covid-19 and is experiencing light symptoms.

In a tweet on Sunday evening, AMLO revealed that he had tested positive for the Covid-19 virus. From his official Twitter account, he said his symptoms were mild and that he was receiving medical treatment.

“I regret to inform you that I have contracted Covid-19. The symptoms are mild, but I am already receiving medical treatment. As always, I am optimistic. We will move forward,” Lopez Obrador wrote.

Despite his diagnosis, the president plans to continue business as usual. He plans to continue with his duties from the Palacio Nacional, which include conducting a planned phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the topic of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine Monday. He added on Twitter, that “I will be conducting all public affairs from the National Palace. For example, tomorrow I will take a call from President Vladimir Putin, because irrespective of friendly relationships, there is a possibility that they will send us the Sputnik V vaccine.”

AMLO has taken a very hands off approach to his country’s response to the Coronavirus pandemic.

AMLO, 67-years-old, has rarely been seen wearing a mask and continued to travel extensively across the country aboard commercial flights – putting both his health and those around him at risk.

He has also resisted locking down the economy, noting the devastating effect it would have on so many Mexicans who live day to day. And because of that, Mexico has one of the highest death rates in the world. Early in the pandemic, asked how he was protecting Mexico, AMLO removed two religious amulets from his wallet and proudly showed them off.

“The protective shield is the ‘Get thee behind me, Satan,’” AMLO said, reading off the inscription on the amulet, “Stop, enemy, for the Heart of Jesus is with me.”

In November, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the World Health Organization, urged Mexico’s leaders be serious about the coronavirus and set examples for its citizens, saying that “Mexico is in bad shape” with the pandemic.

Meanwhile, Mexico continues to experience the worst effects yet of the global health crisis.

Credit: Ismael Rosas / Eyepix Group/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Thanks to a lack of national leadership, Mexico is one of the 17 countries that has reported more than one million cases of Covid-19. Since early October, newly confirmed cases and deaths have been reaching record levels, with recent daily numbers some of the highest since the beginning the pandemic.

According to Johns Hopkins University, Mexico has recorded at least 1,752,347 Covid-19 cases and 149,084 people have died from the virus in the country.

In hardest-hit Mexico City, nearly 30 public hospitals report they have reached 100% percent capacity, and many others are approaching that mark. The city’s Mayor, Claudia Sheinbaum, has urged residents to not go out unless absolutely necessary. In December, Mexico City and the state of Mexico were placed into “red level,” the highest measure on the country’s stoplight alert system for Covid-19 restrictions. The tighter measures included the closure of indoor dining, with only essential sectors like transport, energy, health and construction remaining open.

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