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legalise and control the sale of cannabis.

Comment 7th July 2010

The facts are compelling. Everybody needs a vice to help them unwind from life's stresses. Some choose exercise, some food, some alcohol, others cannabis and of course there are other ways people choose to unwind in too. The problem is not necessarily the substance they choose to, or not to, take; it is the ability to not let it take control of you on a permanent basis. Many people already abuse food and alcohol for example and of course the answer is education – not criminalisation! The only one vaguely valid argument for not legalising cannabis is a so called like to psychosis, my belief is that in these rare cases those individuals were always going to be susceptible to mental health problems anyway, and perhaps cannabis only acted as the trigger. As most people experiment with cannabis at an early age, surely this is the best time diagnose mental health issues – as oppose to a time later on when they would more likely have greater responsibilities as mature adults. Alcohol causes many many more social and health problems and that has always been legal.

With the exception of a minority of disconnected snobs who's only aim in life is to line their own pockets and pass judgement on the people who sustain this country, most people welcome a sensible judgment on this issue. Currently the many millions of cannabis enjoyers have sneak around like criminals interact with REAL criminals to unwind in the way that they feel bests help them. The stigma attached to the majority of cannabis smokers is massively unjustified. Who's ever heard of a cannabis fuelled riot? The fact is that many regular cannabis smokers maintain good jobs, support and provide for their families, and contribute positively to society. Just as many non smokers do too. 

Every one knows about the global recession ( with the exception of most of Asia – a coincidence they are the largest manufacturers in the world?) and it is no surprise that sales of chocolate and alcohol are up. People unwinding, wow! Does anyone know how much sales of cannabis have increased by? Of course not – because the money is going to organised and ruthless criminals. This money could be going a long way to help rebuilding our economy. If there were legal traders of cannabis the strength of it could also be controlled as well as obviously generating huge revenue for the country. There is absolutely no good reason why this is not a viable option. It would never result in a nation of doped up lay abouts, for example in France alcohol is more widely available at young age and the result is not a nation of teenage drunks and progressive alcoholics it is the exact opposite. People respect legitimate freedom to choose life's indulgences for themselves. If cannabis was made legal it would be no more of a stepping stone to harder drugs than a rich tea biscuit or a beer. The fact that people are made to interact with criminal drug dealers to buy cannabis is far more likely to result in a slip into more detrimental vices. For example if you arranged to buy some cannabis and your arrival were told they didn't have any cannabis (because of a massive waste of police resources went on busting a cannabis farm) "but hey since your here do want some of this instead?"!

Why does this matter?

All of the above. In a nutshell – there are massive financial and social benefits for the whole country.

Tweek the legislation around the smoking ban, to allow for legitimate cannabis outlets.

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