How Lewin and Mernagh Legalized Marijuana

An epic slobberknocker stoners will be telling their grandchildren.

Tuesday (Apr. 12) mid afternoon I was standing at Vapor Central vapor bar with Compster when lawyer Paul “The Legalizer” Lewin called. He said something like, ‘Matt, the ruling has come down.’ We were scheduled to be in court Tues Apr. 19, I figured we’d find out my fate then as planned. “You won.” I looked at Compster shocked, “We won!” Compster asked, “The court case?” I nodded. Then I walked out the door where it was quieter. Leaving Compster puzzled.

The Legalizer read me juicy bits of Justice D.J. Taliano. ‘You have a personal exemption from both growing and possessing marijuana, your charge has been permanently stayed, and in 90 days the marijuana laws fall.’ “OMG! We won!” After three years of court, a 14 day stint in Canada’s worst prison, everything had suddenly changed. I think it’s safe to say we were both stunned stone cold, but probably not as much as our prosecutor. Who called Friday Apr. 15 with congratulations for us. He’s a very classy crown.

Now I understand the incoherency that comes with wining big. The bewilderment of accomplishing a dream then being thrust into limelight and expected to make a statement about how you obilerated prohibition. Star athletes, upon winning, are expected to saying nothing more than to thank their family or declare they’re going on holiday.

Opening Vapor Central’s door I shouted, “I’m exempt from the marijuana laws! In 90 days there’s no marijuana laws.” Potheads were confused. Let celebrating begin. A cannon was rolled up and our puff down began. Word spread fast. Cannabis Culture called. “Dude, congratulations. Can we get a comment for a story.” I politely brushed Jeremiah off. While we’re vaporizing, Whyprohibition publicly congrats us and post R v. Mernagh. Jeremiah calls back with a pretty please. The victory has made me even forget they’re three hours behind us.

I’m elated and incoherent, but not from marijuana. Well maybe a little. Struggling with easy questions Jeremiah throws a tougher one. I simply responded, “Dude don’t ask tough questions.” Feeling like I just won the Stanley Cup or WWE Championship I should only have to say, “I’m going to Vansterdam.” And that’s what I tell him.

Over a delicious DeSoto meal, Curly Girl and I discover why potheads are going crazy. We’re the only one’s in the restaurant reading a computer screen. Everyone else is watching the leader’s debate. Our jaws continue to drop. The Legalizer and Mernahuana beat prohibition senseless. Everything I visualized happened. Mr. Mernagh you are free to grow was my meditation mantra.

I knew it was pretty awesome…but I woke up the next day fairly famous. Newstalk 1010 newsroom woke me at 7:30. Pulling the number from their contact list. Little early to be booked for Jim Richards Showgram, I thought. Instead news department saying I’m their top story. Oh? I better get a get coffee. Please call me back. I pick up a Toronto Star at 7/11 get their large coffee. Opening it at check-out, I discover the Star has a banner headline Pot Laws Ruled Unconstitutional. Osgoode Hall law professor Alan Young has put us over huge. Woe. Now I’m really shocked, but get through my interview.

Then CBC Metro Morning requests an interview with host Matt Galloway. Immediately following I’m on Newstalk 1010 John Moore show. Going to be a long amazing day.

Lewin and I finally meet up at his office for television at noon. Just a stream of media are making requests. CityTV Avry Haines sparks my joint. Afterwards CityTV drive me to Vapor Central where they film my friends celebrating with me. I’m sneak into the background to do a phone interview. Then I’m off in CityTV vehicle for an in studio interview with the guy who has been with me from day one, Jim Richards.

I show a little late. But when your famous this is allowed.

The Legalizer and I worked exceedingly hard for our win. This week, and the next few, Apr. 20 Yonge and Dundas Square and May 7 Global Marijuana March will be victory days for sure. Without the support of numerous people we wouldn’t have been able to generate the mountain of evidence we called.

Finally, most importantly, thank you to everyone who pitched in.

Matt Mernagh
Matt Mernagh

Matt Mernagh is author of Marijuana Smoker's Guidebook The Easy Way To Identify and Enjoy Marijuana Strains ( by Green Candy Press and hosts a weekly weedy webcast The Menahuana Zone on Pot.TV every Tuesday. The Mernagh Ruling is a test case of Canada's cannabis laws and was spearheaded by Mernagh, lawyer Paul Lewin and 22 witnesses from across Canada.



  1. Carl K on

    What is “CC overloads on brutal info!” supposed to mean?

  2. Anonymous on

    I never said voting is childish. I don’t think you understood my post.

  3. Anonymous on

    Then Don’t Vote if its so childish!

    And Yes, CC overloads on brutal info!

  4. Anonymous on

    Finally a sensible comment about this issue. The reality is that no laws have been changed as of yet, and the government is already set to appeal the decision, so I fail to see why everyone is celebrating and ignorantly claiming that pot is now legal. This same exact thing happened 8 years ago during the “summer of legalization”. No laws were changed then, and no laws have been changed now. Pot has been illegal in Canada for decades and will remain so for more decades to come unless the self-aggrandizing, irresponsible, and childish activism tactics are changed to something more mature and reasonable. Who is going to take us seriously if we act like arrogant little kids and smoke as much as possible so as to look like brain dead zombies in public. Marc Emery set a bad example by presenting himself as perpetually incoherent and baggy eyed in every interview. Do you expect people to hear you out if you’ve just had 3 or 4 drinks and you are having trouble with slurred speech? The same thing applies to marijuana. If you appear stoned and act stoned, you are not going to be taken seriously.

    Bottom line, nobody has “won” anything. One judge’s ruling does not magically change the laws. I think a lot of the people reading this magazine need to stop buying into the bullshit that CC publishes on a regular basis. I support the movement, but I do not support propaganda of any kind, regardless of who it is coming from.

  5. Canadian Head on

    There is something to say about being a gracious winner…………… I find the egoism here distatesful. The Fight for legalization in Canada is far from over, this case is far from the end of that. Lets save the Victory dance for then.

  6. Jerry in TEXAS on

    Congrats to all of you…sounds like there’s a change wind blowing up north…please hope with all of us in USA that the winds of change blow here too. Marc’s work is slowly making a change.Thanks Marc. let’s work evan harder to GET YOU HOME!

  7. Anonymous on

    congratulations on the right to medicate, we always knew it was wrong the whole time. nice tact.
    silly people thinking they will win an appeal. all it shows is that just cant accept they have taken the wrong stance since day one. face up to it peoples, push this further and lose even more. get it set rock hard in concrete for us huh? want to take it to the federal level and lose that too? one piece of good advice though matt, make sure you become “clean” once your three months is up. dont give em a chance.

  8. bentalong on

    Perhaps it is legal for you but theres nothign to stop the laws being changed for the rest of us well people in the next three months. Even after that point they’ll most likely change things but its a win for you that’s for sure. Congrats!