Pubdate: Thu, 29 Jan 2004
Source: Essex Chronicle (UK)
Copyright: 2004 Quicksilver Media
Author: Name withheld
Bookmark: (Cannabis - United Kingdom)


THE down grading of cannabis from class B to C seems to have prompted the
'anti-cannabis' campaigners to launch their traditional arguments, against a
drug that, if it really did have all the negative effects claimed, should
have long ago turned the population of the UK into snarling drugged out

Therefore, in referring to the 'dark effects' of cannabis (Chronicle,
January 22), I must take issue with a "parents' tragedy" as justification
for maintaining its classification and 'illegal' status.

The link between psychotic illness and consumption of cannabis is often
cited as reason enough to keep it illegal.

However; the only satisfying evidence linking the two would seem to be the
link with historical, anti-cannabis propaganda. The argument is no more
sophisticated, or backed up with evidence, than the ridiculous 1950s
anti-cannabis film 'Reefer Madness'.

Secondly, there is nothing better than a "parents' tragedy" to muddy the
waters in the interests of the anti-cannabis campaigners. To argue against
their viewpoint - given such painful experience - would appear heartless and
we must listen and feel guilty if we dare to contradict.

The Government is making this change to the classification law based on the
experience of millions of cannabis users. It has based this decision on the
fact that cannabis is clearly not, based on one experience, 'capable of
ruining a person mentally for life'.

The anti-cannabis campaigners will never understand that advocacy of
prohibition merely makes it more attractive for potential users, not least
because a 'cannabis experience' would soon teach you that paranoia, fear and
loathing, are attributes of people who say you should not use it!

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