Psychedelics in Brazil: legitimacy and legality

Brazilian attorney Guilherme Kfouri on Sunday, March 13, 2022

In this episode of the New Amsterdam Psychedelic Law Show I speak with São Paulo-based attorney Guilherme Kfouri as part of my quest to connect with psychedelic lawyers all over the world.

Guilherme describes evolutions in Brazilian drug law, including recognition of the indigenous use of ayahusaca, the spread of ayahuasca use into urban environments, the growing interest of Brazilian academic institutions in psychedelics (including Pontifical Catholic University, his alma mater, and the Universidad Federale de São Paolo), the incorporation of ayahusaca into Brazil’s syncretic Catholic practice as exemplified by Father Antonio Marchioni – nicknamed Padre Ticão, the difference between legitimacy and legality, which he connects to the relationship between natural rights and positive rights (something no one ever mentioned in my legal education) and to the position that recognition of the legitimacy of psychedelic use will precede the legality of psychedelic use.

Guilherme passionately articulates an idea that motivates me: that lawyers have a special duty to participate in the movement to legalize psychedelics. He also makes the point that there is a special Latin American context to psychedelic legalization in Brazil, Peru, and Colombia, which corresponds to my assumption that integration of psychedelics must be consistent with the cultural and religious environment of each political jurisdiction.

He brought to my attention some institutions that are organizing for change in Brazilian drug law, including :

Guilherme and I are curious as to who considers access to psychedelics to be a “right” and if so what kind and if not why not. Feel free to leave a comment.

Connect with Guilherme on Twitter (his preference) or LinkedIn

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