05 Jul Cannabis Law Reform Is Not About “Getting High”

Alex Horne

Alex Horne

“Colorado has proved that legalising cannabis works, so it’s about time we let the UK get high”

So says journalist Alex Horne in The Independent, yesterday, 4th July 2014.

It is NOT about ‘getting high’, it’s about doing away with a ludicrous, irrational policy that actually causes harm.

One of the reasons our cowardly politicians will not grasp this nettle is because of the sort idiotic, self-defeating behaviour that this headline encapsulates. Just like the demos and public smoke ups, the attitude that this demonstrates is more than enough to let politicians off the hook.

Why should they respond to a call for something so trivial, self-indulgent and which will just turn off the majority of the electorate?

Colorado, Washington and Uruguay haven’t legalised because of such irresponsible behaviour or by badly framed, poorly informed arguments like this. They have done so by careful, diligent presentation of the evidence. The prohibition of cannabis creates a massive criminal market worth £6 billion pa in the UK, encourages under age use, does nothing to control strength or composition of the product and actually maximises harm. Responsible, legal regulation takes the market out of the hands of criminals, protects children, ensures quality and safety through testing and labelling and generates new tax revenue.

It might also help if journalists writing on this subject got their facts and evidence right. There aren’t “2.3 million adults in the UK reporting they have used cannabis”. In fact, 30% of the population will use cannabis in their lifetime, three million people use it a least once per month. One million people use it, often daily, for medicinal purposes.

See the IDMU report ‘Taxing the UK Cannabis Market’ for comprehensive data on the subject. Join the 150,000 followers of CLEAR Cannabis Law Reform to stay in touch with the real progress on this subject.

We need responsible and effective journalism on cannabis law reform. It is time the UK electorate was properly informed about the dreadful results of the policies followed by successive governments and the huge benefits that could accrue from an intelligent, evidence-based policy.