The Cannabis Story in 6 Charts

Cannabis story. Okay, so, guess what? Around the world, people are totally changing their minds about weed. Some countries, like Uruguay in 2013 and Canada in 2018, were like, “Yeah, let’s make recreational cannabis legal!” Malta joined the party in 2021, and Germany just got on board with it too. Even places like the UK and Australia are cool with weed for medical use. But hold up, in the US, it’s a bit different – still illegal nationwide, but heaps of states are chill with either medical or recreational weed. Like, 38 states plus Washington DC are totally on board.

The Big Shift in Public Opinion

Check this out: in the US, way more people are all about legalising weed now. Since the 1990s, it’s like tripled! Nearly 7 out of 10 folks are down for it. And when you ask them about medical and recreational use specifically? Whoa, 9 out of 10 are on board in some way or another. That’s a lot of support!

Who’s on Team Weed?

Now, it’s not just young folks or left-leaning peeps who are into this. Support for weed has gone up across the board – all ages, all political sides. It’s like a big group hug for cannabis, you know?

Changing Minds About Weed’s Dangers

People used to think weed was kinda iffy, but now? Oh boy, the perception’s changed. According to this big survey about drug use in the US, folks see weed as way safer than things like alcohol or cocaine. That gap got seriously huge since the early 2000s. Like, back in 1997, only 20% thought smoking weed once in a while was no big deal. But in 2021, it shot up to more than 50%. Meanwhile, opinions about other drugs didn’t really budge.

The Medical Marijuana Gamechanger

Here’s a big reason why everyone’s getting cool with weed: medical marijuana. Back in the 80s and 90s, studies hinted that weed could help people with HIV or folks going through cancer treatment by easing nausea and boosting appetite. Then, in 1996, California was like, “Yeah, doctors can give weed to patients who need it.” Sure, other states had similar laws earlier, but they kinda faded away.

Media’s Take on Weed

So, in the late 90s, something happened with how newspapers like The New York Times talked about weed. They started chatting more about how weed could help sick people and less about its illegal side. Like, the conversation went from “OMG, weed’s so bad!” to “Hey, it might help sick folks.” Not sure if the media made people change their minds or just reflected what everyone was thinking, but the talk definitely shifted.

Final Thoughts on the Weed Revolution

The world’s flipping its view on weed, guys. More places are saying yes to it, especially for medical reasons. People used to worry about weed, but now they see it as a pretty safe option. And all this change in attitudes? A big chunk of it comes from the idea that weed isn’t just a party drug; it’s actually helping people who really need it. As the conversation around weed keeps evolving, let’s see where this green revolution takes us!