As America celebrates their election day cannabis victory, international onlookers remain prosecuted for using medical marijuana.
While America and Australia go medical, some of the most draconian anti-pot laws remain for New Zealanders. The hypocrisy is best exemplified by Rebecca Reider.
Born in America, the cannabis patient can only get her medicine legally when she’s stateside visiting friends and family.
“It’s been surreal to be a citizen of two different cannabis regimes,” said Reider. “In California I’m a patient; in New Zealand, I was treated as a criminal.”
Rebecca Reider is a journalist and cannabis activist who has unwittingly become the face of New Zealand’s battle for medical marijuana.
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“The people of this country are very ready for things to loosen up,” she told The Marijuana Times. “If we had the possibility of a binding public referendum here, we’d have legal cannabis by now, but alas we need our government to make the change, and it is still in the grip of Reefer-Madness conservatives.”
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She was thrown into the green spotlight in November of 2015, after her shipment of medicated edibles from California was intercepted by New Zealand authorities. Medical marijuana was legal in California at the time and she needed the cannabinoids for her chronic pain.
She was almost prosecuted to the full extent of New Zealand law for her medicinal stash.
It wasn’t until she read the New Zealand Misuse of Drugs Act that she noticed a section which allows for legally obtained controlled drugs into New Zealand – if it’s for treating a medical condition.
A bold soul
Armed with the newfound section of the anti-pot policy, she intentionally brought her medicine through customs this summer. She brought OG Kush, Maui Wowie, and Tangie Kush home, for her healing.
“After enduring the pain of criminal prosecution, I’m committed to doing all I can to improve the situation for everyone,” she said. “Fortunately we have an amazing cannabis movement, with more and more Kiwi patients and families speaking up in the last few years.”
New Zealand’s first medical marijuana conference
Plans are underway for the leading voices in the cannabis movement to bring New Zealand their first medical marijuana conference for professionals. Sources involved in the organization of the conference-in-planning said it could be as early as this coming summer.