09 Feb Britain Is Backwards on Drugs Policy Because Cameron Is A Coward
“The drug policy ground is shifting in the US – and fast. Every month, more Americans favour taxing and regulating marijuana, new ballot initiatives are launched and the status quo appears more outdated.
Last April, Pew Research Centre found that “for the first time in more than four decades of polling on the issue, a majority of Americans [favour] legalising the use of marijuana”. The 52% of people who support the legalisation of marijuana use reflect an 11% increase from 2010. A few months later, Gallup released a poll that revealed 58% of Americans support legalisation.
As the debate generates steam, it is becoming increasingly more sophisticated. On the rare occasions that pundits revive tired Reefer Madness narratives, they are largely mocked or simply ignored. Colorado and Washington may seem like quirky experiments to some, but these states will not be alone for long. It is expected that marijuana will be on the ballot in 2014 in Alaska and the people of Oregon appear poised to approve a tax-and-regulate system this year. One poll found that 57% of likely voters in Oregon support marijuana legalisation.”
Kasia Malinowska-Sempruch, The Observer,
Meanwhile, back in Britain, David Cameron can find nothing intelligent, constructive or sensible to say on the subject, even when his deputy and coalition partner, Nick Clegg, makes repeated attempts to open up the debate.
As Andrew Marr said on his BBC show this morning, what Clegg means is legalisation but politicians are too scared to say that.
Why? Is Britain winning the war on drugs?
David Cameron and Theresa May would like you to think so. They point repeatedly to their statistics that say drug use is declining. On the other hand, the UK market in New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) or ‘legal highs’ is booming. Britain leads Europe in the use of NPS and in the USA where draconian, blanket bans have been implemented usage is twice as high. Yet more evidence that luddites, science and evidence deniers like Cameron will ignore as they cling to their utterly imaginary belief that prohibition makes people stop using drugs.
Similarly, cannabis farm are growing exponentially. According to the Association of Chief Constables (ACPO), 3032 were discovered in 2007/8, 6866 in 2009/10, 7865 in 2011/12 and current data suggest in excess of 10,000 in 2013/14. The street price of cannabis has reached £15.00 per gram as demand continues to grow.
Cameron and his hypocritical cronies who enjoyed vast quantities of alcohol, cannabis and cocaine in their Bullingdon Club binges define what is wrong with politics in Britain. Nothing exemplifies this better than their insincere, deceitful and cowardly approach to drugs policy.
He is intimidated by Big Booze which is determined to hold on to its monopoly of legal recreational drugs – even to the extent that he suppressed evidence on the value of minimum unit pricing. This is a man who cannot distinguish between the horror of 1.2 million hospital admissions each year for alcohol and the relatively trivial 800 hospital admissions each year for cannabis.
He is terrorised by the Daily Mail and Britain’s real drugs minster, Paul Dacre, who, just as he did with Gordon Brown, gives Cameron orders on what to do about drugs on pain of media villification and sensation if he does not comply.
David Cameron, Theresa May, all of the Labour front bench and every other cowardly MP who supports this inaction and stupidity are actively causing harm to our society.
Next time a young person dies from an untested, unknown ‘legal high’ their blood will be on parliament’s hands. Next time a grandmother is mugged or a small retailer burgled by an addict who needs to fund their habit, recognise that it is Britain’s idiotic drugs policy that causes this harm. Next time someone dies from using heroin of unexpected strength or contaminated with poisonous impurities, know that all the evidence has been there for years showing exactly how to reduce and minimise such dangers.
How many more people must die, how many more lives must be ruined, how many more communities must be blighted by street dealing before Cameron faces facts, lives up to his responsibilities and acts as he must know that he should?