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Tony Grist

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Cannabis Culture [Apr. 4th, 2008|10:49 am]
Tony Grist
Gordon Brown wants to regrade cannabis from a Class "C" to a Class "B" drug. In response members of his cabinet have been falling over themselves to confess their own past drug use. I don't know if they're doing this to pre-empt future revelations or in an attempt to head him off at the pass, but the effect is to highlight just how mainstream cannabis now is .

If you're under seventy (and not Gordon Brown) you'll have been around the stuff and probably used it.  I don't smoke tobacco, so I don't smoke grass- simple as that- but I did try it once (it made me cough) and I've been in houses where the fug hung so heavy I was getting the full benefit. By the way, does that make me an accessory?

The criminalisation of cannabis criminalises us all. I think it's daft. 

Upping the penalties for cannabis use isn't going to squash the cannabis culture.  We should decriminalise it for the same reason we haven't criminalised alcohol- a far more dangerous drug- because it's entrenched, it's here to stay- and a law that isn't going to work- that can't be properly enforced, that goes against the grain of what's socially accepted- is unjust and brings all law into disrepute.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: jenny_evergreen
2008-04-04 12:33 pm (UTC)
a law that isn't going to work- that can't be properly enforced, that goes against the grain of what's socially accepted- is unjust and brings all law into disrepute.

YES. OMG I wish Certain People would GRASP this already. I REALLY don't think it's that hard to understand. And, hello, we HAD Prohibition in this country. WHY do people not get WHY it didn't work?

(Oops. Sorry for the rant. Just...kind of...you know... OMGthestupiditburns. Sometimes it gets to me.)

(And, nope, never used it, myself, and no desire to, either.)
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-04-04 01:38 pm (UTC)
The War on Drugs is a disaster- just as Prohibition was.

Our leaders love declaring wars on things they can't possibly beat. Is it because they're stupid or because a state of perpetual war suits them and their profiteering buddies?
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[User Picture]From: jenny_evergreen
2008-04-04 01:40 pm (UTC)
Yup.

*sigh* Now there's a rhetorical question if ever I heard one...
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[User Picture]From: suemars
2008-04-04 12:57 pm (UTC)
i myself don't smoke, but know lots of people that do. i'm not sure why its not legalized. the government would make so much money.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-04-04 01:40 pm (UTC)
All the evidence suggests that cannabis is less harmful than tobacco. The Law's an ass.
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[User Picture]From: solar_diablo
2008-04-04 03:15 pm (UTC)
NPR was doing a story on marijuana vendors in California, which are legal under their state medicinal laws but they still occasionally run afoul of the federal government. It got me wondering why marijuana is still classified as a drug no less dangerous than cocaine or heroin by the feds. The thought struck me that perhaps it might be due in part to how easily it can be grown by the everyday citizen if it were legal, as opposed to other drugs. Grandma might not want to be bothered with a meth lab in her basement even if it were legal, for example, just because of all the fuss involved. But how hard is it to grow pot alongside your petunias? So maybe there's a fear on the part of the government that a recreational drug so easily grown would be completely untrackable (and therefore impossible to regulate and tax)?
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-04-04 06:28 pm (UTC)
I think you could be onto something there.

Cannabis is a weed and absurdly easy to grow. The police in greater Manchester are always discovering and breaking up indoor marijuana "farms".
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From: msjann65
2008-04-04 03:20 pm (UTC)

Re: Gnats & Camels

I know many people who believe tobacco should be criminalized while marijuana should be legalized.
Talk about two-faced! I have used both, and as I see it there are far worse drugs out there - cocaine, heroin, amphetamine.
Governments seem to be powerless when it comes to those drugs that tear the very fabric of society. To quote a "Friend" of mine: "They strain at gnat(s) and swallow camel(s)."
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-04-04 06:29 pm (UTC)

Re: Gnats & Camels

I don't think any drug should be illegal. Some drugs should be controlled- which isn't quite the same thing.
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[User Picture]From: veronica_milvus
2008-04-04 03:28 pm (UTC)
I have never taken an illegal substance (too scared). But I have to say that I don't think the stuff is harmless. I know regular users who used to be bright, extrovert and ambitious and are now bitter, incoherent and going nowhere. I wonder if that is a coincidence. If I see a real incoherent, angy, paranoid LJ rant e.g. on politics_forum, I can be pretty sure that if I go to the user's LJ and scroll down a bit, there will be references to heavy pot use.

It is hard to know whether people get like that because they smoke pot, or whether people who feel like that use pot to self medicate. Which is cause, and which is effect?

Anyway, I work in the pharma industry and know the hoops we have to jump through to get a beneficial drug classed as "safe". So I don't think it is a very good argument to say that because thre are more harmful drugs around, that slightly harmful ones should therefore be permitted. If it were up to me, I would ban tobacco. It never did a moment of good to anyone. Alcohol, most people can use without lasting harm, so that seems ok to me!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-04-04 06:33 pm (UTC)
The hardcore potheads I knew at university were mostly idiots and embarassing to be around. I suspect most of them were fools before they started to inhale.

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[User Picture]From: redatt
2008-04-04 03:45 pm (UTC)
If you're under seventy (and not Gordon Brown) you'll have been around the stuff and probably used it.

I am under seventy and not Gordon Brown, yet I have neither been around the stuff nor used it :~D

But I'm in general agreement with you about it, I think.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-04-04 06:34 pm (UTC)
Maybe I move in particularly louche circles :)
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[User Picture]From: zoe_1418
2008-04-04 04:06 pm (UTC)
I agree with you on this!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-04-04 06:34 pm (UTC)
Excellent.
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