Pubdate: Sun, 22 Aug 1999
Date: 08/22/1999
Source: Observer, The (UK)
Author: Shug

Approaching my thirtieth anniversary as a daily dope-smoker, I am one
of many from the hippie generation to have retained my preference for
this life-enhancing herb over all other forms of stimulus, and am
convinced that it has enabled me to avoid the slippery slope into
alcohol-dependency that characterises this back-to-front society of

Recently detained by Wiltshire police after my first arrest in this
country for possession of a small amount of hash, I was visited by the
(Asian) police doctor who chatted to me for three minutes, declined to
examine me or even take my pulse, and pronounced 'You look pretty well
on it.' Which I do.

So I am one of thousands of long-term users who can be accessed to
undermine the wearisome traditional politicians' response to repeated
calls for the decriminilisation, if not the full legalisation, of
cannabis: that there is 'no medical research' to justify such
liberalism. Official research has long been blocked yet you have only
to ask and examine dope-smokers of all ages to discover exactly how
beneficial or deleterious it really is. Compare us with daily boozers
of similar longevity, and the results will show unanswerable proof of
dope's superiority.

Two-and-a-half cheers, then, for Charles Kennedy, who has immediately
proved what we have all suspected for years: that somehow a fully
rounded human being has risen to political prominence in this
benighted country. The other half-cheer will be earned when he has
sampled the stuff for himself. I'm off for my first puff of the day.
Keep banging the drum.