Global marijuana use rose by 60 percent over the past decade

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The global story about cannabis — the most-used recreational drug in the world — is about as fuzzy as your body feels after taking your first hit. While some places, such as states in the US, have legalized the drug, it is strictly prohibited in others.

Almost 200 million people smoke pot worldwide according to the2019 World Drug Report, published Wednesday, and that number is rising. Whether this is a good or bad thing seems somewhat hard to decipher with inconsistent global regulations on the drug, conflicting research studies and little concrete evidence of its long-term effects.

This inconsistent approach to regulation is most apparent in the United States, where, for example, one can take a road trip to Colorado — where cannabis was legalized recreationally in 2012 — and purchase the drug at one of the local streetside dispensaries as long as they have an ID.

However, immediately after crossing the border into Kansas, Colorado’s border state where the drug is illegal, pot-smokers can be arrested and charged with thousand-dollar fines or jail time. If caught again, they could face even heftier jail sentences. [Read more at Deutsche Well]