*By Amanda Weston* Canadians may be legally able to purchase recreational marijuana for the first time as of Wednesday, but a longtime legalization advocate said there's still more work to do. Jodie Emery, editor-in-chief of Cannabis Culture, said the decades-long movement is about a message of civil liberties ー not just access to bud. "\[Marijuana\] is something a lot of people have suffered for over many, many years, so let's look at amnesty for all non-violent cannabis offenses," Emery told Cheddar Wednesday. "But of course this is a major step. It creates inspiration for the world to change their laws too in other countries. So symbolically, wonderful. The details, we've got a lot of work to do to fix them up." Canada became the [second country](https://cheddar.com/videos/canada-cannabis-opens-for-business) to legalize recreational marijuana at the federal level this week and the government is also set to pardon those with a possession record of 30 grams or less, the new legal amount. But access to weed depends on the province. New Foundland will open brick-and-mortar stores, while Ottawa is starting with online-only transactions. Emery said there are no stores in Ontario, and customers must get marijuana via mail order from the government. "This is a first step, and as long as the government isn't too restrictive and prohibitive, hopefully we can see some real access and not just this very limited supply," Emery said. The Canadian government expects to eradicate 30 percent of the black market. "The issue is the government tries to eliminate the criminal market with criminal laws, but they're creating the criminal market," Emery said. "When they restrict and prohibit cannabis and increase the risk, the reward goes up, and that invites criminal behavior. But if there's no force, no coercion, no violence, no victim, there should be no crime. So this idea that the government wants to eliminate organized crime's involvement, they actually invite them in by keeping it prohibited and restricted in any way." Despite the ongoing work ahead, Emery said other countries may be inspired to follow Canada's lead. "Around the world other countries are looking to Canada as an example, and I just hope that they won't be as restrictive," Emery said. "This is a symbolic shift that allows other countries to say, 'We should legalize too.' And as more places try out different approaches, we'll see what works best, and I hope that will loosen up the restrictions and allow more liberty and more economic growth for everybody to benefit from cannabis." For full interview [click here](https://cheddar.com/videos/canada-marijuana-legalization-symbolically-wonderful).

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