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Letter: It s time to end the war on marijuana

Alun Buffry

Maple Ridge News, Canada

Friday 18 May 2001

Re: Don't legalize pot ( letters, May 9 ).

Although pleased to see 13-year-old Jeremie Geschke writing to your paper, in this case his thinking is cloudy.

As he says, "Cannabis ... contains over 360 different chemicals," as do most foods. The rest of letter concerns the bad effects of cannabis - all, by the way, from anecdotal evidence or from results of using one chemical - THC - on animals in a laboratory. The World Health Organisation itself points out in their report that those results are far different from what is seen in human populations who smoke the pure plant.

But the real cloudiness is in the idea that keeping cannabis illegal will somehow reduce harm and damage, for all the problems occur under cannabis prohibition.

Legalisation of the plant would take the supply away from people who may sell polluted or dirty cannabis concoctions or hard drugs. It would enable advice to be given to users. It would both save public expense by freeing up police and court time, and increase government revenue through taxation on profits. It would enable people who need the plant for medical purposes to buy or grow cannabis safely without having to enter the world of crime. It would enable more investment and research into one of the most versatile and efficacious plants on Earth.

If indeed anyone suffers terribly from ill effects, one thing is sure - arresting them will not help.

Alun Buffry Legalise Cannabis Alliance ( UK Political Party ) Norwich, England




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