Pubdate: Wed, 17 Jul 2002
Source: Evening News (UK)
Copyright: Eastern Counties Newspapers Group Ltd,2002
Author: Alun Buffry, Legalise Cannabis Alliance,


Home Secretary, David Blunkett, announced that he intended to reclassify 
cannabis as a class C drug

Many cannabis campaigners and professionals are disappointed with the 
announcement and concerned that, although there may appear to be some 
progression in thought, the results may be negative,

There will still be no legal supply routes and no safe place for users to 
interact socially, as do people who choose to drink alcohol.

I cannot see how these changes will help anyone except maybe the police who 
will save time through not having to arrest and process people caught with 
small amounts of cannabis.  I find the proposals very unclear in the message.

Mr Blunkett is saying that although cannabis is a dangerous drug, it is 
less dangerous than other class B drugs, so penalties for possession will 
be reduced.

On the other hand, he is saying that the penalty for suppling cannabis will 
become the same for class C as for class B.

He seems to have forgotten that supply is driven by demand and 
uncontrollable if left outside of the law.  It is also highly profitable 
and untaxable.

With a lesser penalty on possession it is likely that more people will 
smoke cannabis more openly, thus introducing it to more others.  This will 
lead to an increase in demand.

If users are not allowed to grow it then they can only buy it illegally.

The question is: what sort of people are going to sell what sort of cannabis?

If we are not careful the less discernable cannabis supplier will find a 
gateway to offer hard drugs.

Only legalisation - bringing it within the law - can separate cannabis from 
hard drugs.  And people should be allowed to grow it.

I can only wonder what smoke signals the Government is sending us?

Alun Buffry

Legalise Cannabis Alliance PO Box 198 Norwich NR3 3WB
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