Cannabis legalization campaigners this week celebrate another historic moment in the fight to end cannabis prohibition. A few days ago USA Attorney General Eric Holder gave his long awaited response to the decision to legalize cannabis in Colorado and Washington states.
The prohibitionist movement fully expected Holder to firmly re-state federal opposition to cannabis legalization at state level. Most of the experienced political observers, however, expected Obama’s Government to dodge the cannabis issue completely and leave it all for the next President to sort out. In the end Holder surprised everyone by telling the governors of Washington and Colorado that the Department Of Justice will formally allow them to continue with the legalized production, distribution and sale of cannabis. Cannabis campaigners around the world were stunned. No-one really expected this; the news and the long-term implications continue to sink in.
Above, Dutch Passion Think Different grown by TaNg in soil under LED. Automatic cannabis varieties just keep getting better
More details are here. Many believe that this is the most significant step towards the normalization of cannabis since the war on drugs began. This is significant for the USA since it gives the green light to the rest of the states to ballot and plan for legal cannabis, and many are doing just that. It is significant for the rest of the world because it is a clear signal that the USA Federal Government no longer believes in the illegality of cannabis.
USA strategy on cannabis has always dictated policy in Canada, South America, Europe and elsewhere. Now that the USA Federal Government is allowing large-scale growing of cannabis in legalized states there is nothing stopping other countries doing the same. For many years Dutch campaigners have wanted large-scale legal cannabis growing to enable coffeeshops to be supplied without resorting to the black market. Perhaps now this will happen. The only people with anything to lose are the black-market suppliers. The USA has set the precedent and others are sure to follow.
Above, Dutch Passion Strawberry Cough, the original anti-anxiety relaxation medicine, grown by Saint
A letter from the USA Police Chiefs to Eric Holder contains one significant truth “The failure of the Federal government to act in this matter is an open invitation to other states to legalize marijuana in defiance of federal law”. At least 10 states in the USA are looking to legalize pot in the next 2-3 years and that will soon mean that over half the states in the USA will have voted for legal cannabis. Eventually it will mean millions less Americans have the stigma of a narcotics criminal record which would affect future educational and employment prospects. Cannabis will indeed become fully legal, without federal opposition, in any state that votes for it. It’s an incredible victory for commonsense, compassion and democracy.
There is a special United Nations General Assembly in 2016 to review drugs policy, the first such meeting since 1998. By then the UN may well have to deal with the fact that most delegates believe that the war on drugs is unwinnable. It’s still too early to forecast how that UN General Assembly will develop. Come 2016 it could well be that the United Nations is forced to start reviewing some of its own outdated thinking. In any event, the 2016 UN Assembly will be essential viewing.
Dutch Passion Night Queen, a narcotic Afghani indica, showing rich levels of resin production, grown and enjoyed by The Villan
Where does all this leave the campaign to legalize cannabis? 2012 and 2013 have seen an incredible series of events. Uruguay deciding to legalize. The relentless conversion of the USA, state by state, to legal cannabis. Calls for legalization in Canada, South Africa and throughout South America.
The majority of public opinion believes that cannabis is a genuinely effective medicine and is far safer than alcohol when used responsibly by adults for recreational or medicinal purposes. Cannabis prohibition never made any sense, everyone will benefit when it is finally legal. It’s time for this generation of politicians to do the right thing and finally end the mess caused by cannabis prohibition.
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September 6th 2013