The world has awoken. Once a substance only smoked illicitly by people demonized as violent criminals, cannabis is now respected, admired and researched in equal measure.
CBD is being hailed as the biggest medical game-changer of the 21st century, and state after state, country after country are finally legalising cannabis – many for medical use, some for recreational too.
Forget counter-culture, cannabis is now well and truly mainstream – used by everyone from high-flying city workers to grandparents for pain according to Danny Mowlds of cannabis social club in Spain, The Cali Cave.
These are exciting times according to Danny who will guide us through the transformation of cannabis culture.
A Worldwide Awakening
But rewind time, and it wasn’t so long ago that the world was practically in an era of cannabis prohibition, with the vast majority of countries outlawing cannabis in all its forms.
Over in the US of A, Oregon was a pioneer – decriminalizing cannabis in 1973. Three years later, the Netherlands made cannabis available recreationally for consumption in coffee shops. Then California became the first to legalize medical marijuana (1996), while the first for recreational use was Colorado, some 16 years later in 2012.
Cannabis – no longer is it a dirty word.
They Said X, Y and Z Would Happen. It Hasn’t.
Cannabis is a topic that’s been pontificated about by politician after politician. As it turns out, all of those very many predictions – both good and bad, have proven to be a damp squib.
“People have said when you legalize cannabis, crime will decline. Hasn’t happened. Weed use will decline. Hasn’t happened. Some have been afraid that when you legalize cannabis, its use will increase significantly in young people. Hasn’t happened — people above the age of 25 are using it more”.
- Thomas Pietschmann, UN Drug Researcher
Oh and just for the record, cannabis has finally been debunked as being a gateway drug (as it turns out, that’s alcohol).
Cannabis on the Red Carpet
Celebs who back CBD seem to grow in number by the week – with Jennifer Anniston, Morgan Freeman, and Montel Williams being among the many to speak up. Some even have their own CBD and cannabis product lines (like esteemed actor Whoopi Goldberg and son of Biggie Smalls C.J. Wallace). While others openly smoke cannabis and are vocal in their advocacy (like Rhianna, Miley Cyrus and Willie Nelson).
The Scales of Justice Tip the Right Way
The rest of Europe has been seriously slow to catch up to its central neighbor of the Netherlands. A recent report estimates that “by 2028… the European recreational cannabis market will be worth €65 billion”, and in 2019, Luxembourg was the very first to legalize cannabis production and consumption, while over in the UK, cannabis possession punishments have fallen off a cliff since 2010 – dropping from a touch over 140,000 to just under 60,000 in 2017.
“This drug policy we had over the last 50 years did not work. Forbidding everything made it just more interesting to young people … I’m hoping all of us will get a more open-minded attitude toward drugs”.
- Etienne Schneider, Luxembourg politician and economist of the Luxembourg Socialist Workers’ Party
Hola – Smoke-up in Spain
One of the most recent European countries to have joined the party is Spain, which now has hundreds of smoking clubs, coffee shops and associations – the best of which are famous the world over.
Here, things are strictly recreational. Some citizens opt to grow their own at home, while a hustling, bustling social scene continues to grow.
Take a trip to Barcelona, and shops await with wide ranges of canna paraphernalia, grow equipment and seeds. Study the seeds on sale here, and you’ll quickly notice that they’ve been shipped in from the famous Sunshine State – California.
Particularly inspired by this US state and all the exotic strains that it’s home to, one cannabis club – the Cali Cave – has earned itself plenty of attention from exotic strain hunters, celebs and hip hop artists alike. Now with two clubs – one in Benidorm and another in Alicante, this place leads the scene with style and substance. Just two years into its history, the Cali Cave has also arrived at exactly the right time – as we stand at the beginning of a new decade and positive change that looks set only to accelerate.