- Christopher Smith, Editor-in-Chief
The Wise Ones Call for Overhaul of Global Cannabis Laws
An article in my new favorite across-the-pond cannabis pub, Leafie: "NICK CLEGG JOINS CALL FOR OVERHAUL OF GLOBAL CANNABIS LAWS" might make our American readers wonder whether we're competing for the most obscure and boring headline. Just you wait.
First, to answer the burning question on our American readers' lips, Who the hell is Nick Clegg?
Well he’s Sir Nicholas William Peter Clegg, to you, and no, he’s not just any rich British white guy, thank you very much:
He was Member of Parliament from 2005 to 2017;
Served as Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 2010 to 2015 and as Leader of the Liberal Democrats from 2007 to 2015
He calls himself an "Orange Book" liberal, which means unlike those bullshitters who say they're "socially liberal but fiscally conservative," he has been associated with both socially liberal and economically liberal policies. (Hey Uncle Joe, he’s one of us!)
He’s cashing in as an executive at Facebook now. I mean Meta.
So Meta Nick Clegg (for Lakers fans out there), is joining a Who’s Who of big deals and retired big deals who are members of the Global Commission on Drug Policy.
[In addition to Meta Nick Clegg, the Commission includes Richard Branson, as well as former heads of state from New Zealand, Poland, Brazil, Mexico, South Africa, Chile, Colombia, Haiti, Switzerland, Nigeria and not one American on the whole list… Maybe that’s enough to make this thing work!]
The Commissioners have written a report called “Time to End Prohibition” which calls for:
The reform of the UN conventions, which would be appropriate since the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs is now 60 years old and was flawed from the start
BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY, it calls for “a transfer of responsibility of “key health aspects of drug policy reform” from the UN Drugs Office (UNODC) to the World Health Organization (WHO).”
If we can take this literally and optimistically, the idea of taking cannabis out of the realm of law enforcement and into the hands of health care leaves my martini shaken not stirred.
"Time to End Prohibition" is packed full of frosty nuggets revealing the egregious mishandling of drugs - both controlled and non - around the world for the last six decades. It "… highlights the fact that the almost global prohibition of drugs by governments and their agencies has failed in its objective. Despite the estimated $100 billion a year spent collectively on enforcement, the number of people using drugs has actually increased. From 1998 to 2018, drug use increased 45%. Epic fail! (Epic party!)
It argues that drug prohibition “marginalizes and violates the rights of people who use drugs, perpetuates systemic racism, drives violence, and over-burdens criminal justice systems.”
That’s some State of Cannabis News Hour-level shit right there.
THE LOOP BACK
By the way, the failures of drug policies go far beyond cannabis, and really show the Cruelty of the Colonial Big Pharma/Law Enforcement Complex:
" … more than 80% of the world’s population, mostly living in low- and middle-income countries, still lack access to controlled drugs for pain relief, anesthesia, drug dependence, maternal health, mental health, neurology, respiratory distress and palliative care.
"The amount of morphine available per person and per country is still infinitesimally small to non-existent in many developing countries….
Strict international controls have left millions of people around the world suffering with untreated pain."
And we know that The Plant can provide relief for so many, IT'S TIME FOR PROHIBITION TO END!
[Last word to Sir Nick:
“The former deputy Prime Minister went on to say, “In what rational world would you treat something where the existing approach is leading to more and more harm, more and more deaths, and greater and greater profits for organized criminality? Why would you persist with the same philosophy? In what world is a public health issue solved by enriching criminals?”]