Legal cannabis has been on the table in North America since it was first legalized for medical purposes in California in 1996, yet it wasn’t until these last couple years that cannabis made a huge shift across the continent that the early pioneers of cannabis could have never foreseen.
2018 is proving to be an exciting year for cannabis as states like California make huge moves towards recreational legalization and Canada is about to go fully legal nationwide later this summer. When we think back to how cannabis was perceived for later-Millennials and Gen X’s back in the 90s and early-2000s, and even the dawn of this decade, we appreciate greatly how far the cannabis community has come in terms of legalization, de-stigmatization and the overall growth of what’s available in cannabis products and accessories.
April is around the corner, and as we move towards celebrating April 20, better known in the cannabis community as 4/20, it’s a great time to reflect on the ways cannabis culture has changed this decade.
Here are three notable ways that cannabis has changed since the turn of 2010, to be where we find it now as a thriving industry in 2018:
Medical to Recreational Legalization
While it’s stating the obvious, it can’t really be understated how important the move from total prohibition to legal medical cannabis to legalizing recreational cannabis has been for communities, governments, and the cannabis industry.
We have been fighting against prohibition since it was outlawed with the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937. Since then, cannabis has had a sordid and tumultuous ride to acceptance and legalization, and still, in too many states and countries around the world, prohibition reigns strong. In the U.S., cannabis is still federally illegal so we still have a long way to go to celebrate the full progress of cannabis legalization.
Nevertheless, the early adoption of cannabis for medical purposes in California, and other subsequent states came with some stigma. Still, at the turn of the millennium, qualifying conditions remained stringent in some areas. Over time, the rules that governed medical cannabis began to broaden to become more inclusive of more common medical conditions, allowing millions across the U.S. to get cannabis cards, and hundreds of thousands in Canada to follow suit once it was legalized in 2001.
Now that cannabis is available in 8 states across the USA and legal for recreational use in 9, and almost fully legal in Canada, it’s a new day for accepting the existence of recreational cannabis. Most of the governments still advocate for cannabis legalization not so much as a green light for cannabis use, but as a means to regulate it, keep it away from minors, and profit from its legal sale via taxation.
In California and other huge markets abroad, the road to legal cannabis is still bumpy and the kinks are yet to be fully ironed out, but we’re getting there. For a lot of places in North America, legal recreational cannabis is here to stay.
Emerging as Proudly Green
Now that the tides are turning towards the legalization of recreational cannabis, we’re seeing a surge of new, and sometimes unexpected users, coming out proudly as cannabis users. They’re tired of living under the stigma, and hiding that aspect of themselves from their peers.
The lines for discussion are now being opened, and people are now emerging proudly green. It was only early last year that I publically announced my own “coming out” green. The response was incredible, and to this day, I still have so many people from my past confiding in me with their cannabis stories.
Our founder Ozzie Ozkay-Villa, the Oov Team and all the Oov Ambassadors have their own story of emerging as cannabis users, and cannabis entrepreneurs to their personal and professional circles. Through supporting each other in sharing cannabis as a beneficial part of who we are, we grow the cannabis community and continue to build the momentum this decade is blazing forward with.
Sophistication in Tech and Design
One stop at the Oov Shop will show you how advanced the cannabis industry has come in terms of design and convenience for cannabis accessories and products aimed towards health and wellness.
From the Peacock Eye Crystal Pipe that looks more like a delicate coffee table piece, to the Lady G handbags that bring the fashion of handbags to a discreet but serious cannabis stash, to the way Crave is bringing serious cannabis infusions to skin care through products like their Radical C-Serum, the cannabis industry has stepped up.
Gone are the days of smoking out of an apple, or a crushed pop-can, or baking pot
brownies that will fill your parent’s kitchen with the dank. Cannabis oils, strips, tinctures, balms, serums, oils, salves, edibles, confections, pipes, vaporizers, and so much more are hitting the market in droves with a sophistication that has a super high bar.
Stay tuned to Oov as we unveil some more great products and let us know what your favorite products and accessories are – we’re always excited to hear the way cannabis is making its way into your lifestyle.
Legal Cannabis is Here to Stay
There’s that old adage, “if you can’t beat them, join them,” and while legal cannabis doesn’t mean that everyone will just start using cannabis, it will help take the edge off for those who hold a stigma or misconceptions about cannabis.
It’s up to us to continue to evolve, educate, and create change so that a decade from now, we’ll be able to report on worldwide legalization and the ways that cannabis is making some serious global impact.