Revolution unveiled. Hey, have you noticed how attitudes about weed are totally changing? Yeah, it’s true! Countries all over the place are starting to give the green light to pot. Uruguay did it back in 2013, then Canada in 2018, and even Malta joined the club in 2021. And guess what? Just recently, Germany hopped on the train too. Plus, loads of places like the UK and Australia are cool with using cannabis for medical reasons. Even in the US, where it’s still illegal federally, tons of states have given the thumbs up for either medical or recreational use – like 38 states and Washington DC!
The Big Shift in Opinion
In the US, people used to be kinda iffy about legalising weed. But now? Whoa, things have totally flipped! Back in the 90s, only a small bunch of folks wanted it legal. But now, nearly 7 out of 10 people are all for it!
And when folks are asked about using weed for medical or just for fun, even more people – like 9 out of 10 – are down with legalising it in some way or another.
Why the Change?
So, how did we end up here? Well, it’s not just because of younger folks or people leaning to the left. Sure, they’re more likely to support it, but guess what? Everyone’s on board with this change – no matter the age or political side.
People’s ideas about how risky weed is have also changed a lot. There’s this survey that’s been tracking what people think about drugs for more than 50 years. And guess what? People think weed is way safer than stuff like alcohol or cocaine. And this gap has just gotten bigger since the early 2000s.
In 1997, only about 1 in 5 people said smoking weed once or twice a week was no big deal. But now, more than half of people think it’s no harm at all. But you know what’s interesting? People’s thoughts about other drugs haven’t really changed that much.
Medicine and Mary Jane
One big reason people are cool with weed now is because of its medical uses. Back in the 80s and 90s, some studies suggested that weed could help with stuff like reducing nausea or boosting appetite for folks with HIV or going through cancer treatments. Then in 1996, California said, “Sure, why not?” and became the first state to let people use weed for medical reasons – but under a doctor’s watch, of course. (Even though other states and Washington DC had some laws about medical weed before, many of those rules expired or got canceled.)
Here’s the thing: the media also played a part in changing how we see weed. There was this study about coverage of weed in The New York Times – a big newspaper in the US. It showed that starting in the late 90s, more and more articles were talking about the medical side of weed, while fewer were about how it was being abused or sold illegally.
Now, we don’t know if the media caused this change or just followed along, but what we do know is that the way people talked about weed shifted. It went from being scary to being seen as helpful for seriously sick people. And you know what’s wild? Most folks who want weed to be legal say it’s because of how it helps medically. In a survey, a whopping 86 percent of people who supported legalisation said that medical use was a really important reason for them.
Final Thoughts on the Weed Wave
So, there you have it! Weed’s making a splash worldwide, and people’s opinions about it have totally transformed. From once being seen as dangerous, it’s now seen as helpful, especially for those in need. With more countries and states coming on board, it looks like the cannabis revolution is here to stay.