By Clark French
Here in the UK, we seem to be very behind the rest of the developed world when it comes to the level to which cannabis has become accepted, not just as a recreational past time, but as a safe and effective treatment for a whole range of serious illnesses. It would be much quicker to do a list of the illnesses cannabis doesn’t treat in comparative length to the ones it does.
With Proposition 215 , or the Compassionate Use of Marijuana Act of 1996, allowing medical use in California and now 17 US state enacting medicinal acts, it begs the question:
Why are we so behind our North American cousins?
Is it a case of British stoicism? Keep calm and carry on? After all we have a reputation for a “stiff upper lip” for never backing out of a fight – even if it’s an illegal one, diplomacy or public opinion never swaying the minds of the decision makers at Number 10 Downing Street.
I wonder why we can follow the Americans around in their illegal wars, but when it comes to the health and rights of our own citizens, we are very much behind.
Even our European friends are far ahead of where we are in the UK.
The Dutch were always ahead of the game – sadly that seems to be going a bit down the drain with their right-wing government, although they are starting to backtrack on their proposed Weed Pass scheme, which is proving to be the disaster just about everyone predicted. Only today Dutch Prime Minister, Mark Rutte, announced he is prepared to discuss problems with the calamitous Cannabis Club Registration Scheme, aka Weed Pass.
However there are causes to celebrate still at the ingenuity of some of our closest neighbours.
Portuguese decriminalisation and the emergence of Cannabis Clubs in Spain all are paving the way for sensible drug policy in the EU. The Czech Republic has liberalised its cannabis policies over the last 10 years, with Prague often being referred to as the ‘Amsterdam of the East’.
The question we must all ask ourselves now is – how long until our government finally sees sense by ending the prohibition of cannabis and allowing ill people like myself access to the medicine I need to have some quality of life?
They will not do it out of kindness. They will only change the law if we shout from the rooftops and shame them into doing the right thing.
We have to stand united and fight this Tyranny.
If you believe that the prohibition of cannabis is wrong, now is the time to get involved in the UK – especially with the formation of NORML UK and the current wave of BBC and media attention putting the issue of cannabis firmly in the public conscience.
If you want to help end this injustice then please not only join NORML UK, but also get involved; find out if there is a Cannabis Social Club in your area and if there is not, start one!
Clark French is a medicinal user of cannabis with Multiple Sclerosis. He is a founding member of NORML UK and speaks on medicinal cannabis issues. Clark will be appearing on UK Channel 4’s 4thought.tv on September 24th 2012. To read Clark’s cannabis strain reviews, check out his blog at clarkfrench.wordpress.com.