"Make the most of the Indian hemp seed and sow it everywhere."
George Washington, 1794
"Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes."
Points to Include - The Police
Pick and choose the ones that suit. You only need four or five.
Please write letters using your own words as far as possible.
The Association of Chief Police Officers supports the reclassification of cannabis.
Many senior police chief, ex senior police chief and senior drug squad officers have said legalising cannabis is the only way to stop the criminal trade.
The experiment in Lambeth has got the backing of over 83% of residents (MORI 21st March 2002)
Only 8% of residents of Lambeth were opposed (MORI 21st March 2002)
Only 12% of people in the whole country opposed a similar scheme being extended nationwide (MORI 21st March 2002)
Police in Lambeth saved over 1,300 hundred hours through this scheme. Administrative staff saved over 1,000 hours. All this in a six month period.
Professor Mike Hough, co-author of the Josepth Rowntree report on reclassification said, "The non-financial benefits could be large since reclassification is likely to remove some of the friction between police and communities that currently hinders co-operation in tackling more serious crime".
This is proved by the evidence of an unprecedented cross-community campaign in Lambeth for the reinstatement of their police commander.
Support for the law in Holland comes from throughout the community; police, politicians, drugs workers, civic leaders, mayors and citizens.
Prohibition adds a dangerous stigma to cannabis. Illegality infuses a joint with an extra buzz, the sort which encourages juvenile use.
Any demand-led trade does not go away simply through prohibiting it. By criminalising drug production and supply the market is handed over to organised criminals (effectively deregulating the drugs trade).
It is now one of the largest commodity trades in the world and cannot be stopped by police.
As with alcohol prohibition in the USA during the 20's and 30's, violent turf wars are provoked as competing criminal networks battle for control of the hugely lucrative drugs market. Criminal drug gangs are responsible for much of the armed violence and bloodshed on the UK's streets.
The basic tenet of drug laws is that some people need protection from themselves. Let's assume for a minute this is true. The question then becomes would a regulated market provide a better safety net than an unregulated one? Who's more likely to be accountable, people who care about abiding by regulations or people who quite obviously don't? Who's got more to lose selling cannabis to a 15 year old, a coffee shop or a dealer? What's the best way of identifying those people who can and do have a problem with this drug; bring it out into the open or try to hide it away? Is someone more or less likely to seek help if what they're admitting to is also illegal? Who is best served to spot people in trouble? Who's more interested in their recovery? One tragic irony of this law, and there are many, is that prohibition abandons the very people it is supposed to protect.
The Runciman Report noted that "The possession of cannabis is seen as the very lowest of priorities for the allocation of police resources"
We want the police to concentrate on rapes, murders, assaults, racial violence, burglary, mugging and vehicle theft before they start on cannabis