War on Drugs

Czechs Struggle to Access Legalized Medical Marijuana

Red tape and regulation can make a mockery of legalization


Just three years ago, the only thing that Zdenek Majzlik knew about cannabis was that it's good stuff for making rope. Today, the 67-year-old retired nuclear power plant employee is an experienced grower who cultivates pot for his daughter who has multiple sclerosis.

Majzlik faces a thorny dilemma: The Czech Republic legalized medical marijuana use this year, but maintained strict restrictions on growing, selling and importing it. For Majzlik, the solution is breaking the law to grow pot for his daughter.

"She's my child and it is my duty to take care of her," Majzlik said, standing in front of a cannabis plant in his garden. "I do what I have to and I will continue doing so. I have no other option."