By William Mills
Following on from California’s decision to allow possession of cannabis, another name for marijuana, 7th November 2012 saw an historic step by two more American states, Colorado and Washington to permit personal use possession under state law. Confusingly it still remains illegal under federal laws!
This American quirk means their national government in Washington D.C. says one thing with the federal (national) laws it passes, while the individual regions have their own local government style state parliaments which also pass laws saying something else.
Of the 750,000 marijuana arrests nationwide last year, 99% of them were carried out by local Police departments.
Although California paved the way with doctors being allowed to prescribe marijuana for medical conditions, outlawed in Britain in 1968, Colorado has accepted its use as a purely recreational drug.
In Britain’s 19th century Victorian preachers sought to keep their parishioners away from alcohol with fiery pulpit speeches damning the wickedness of drink with comparisons to the devil. A culture grew up treating alcohol as a medicine with phrases like to keep the cold out and just a little nip. Although alcohol actually makes the body lose heat and one nip usually leads to another.
The British convinced themselves that alcohol was drunk for anything but intoxication. Now a brave US state has crossed the line and Colorado is the first to recognise recreational use for getting high. It has eliminated penalties for the possession of one ounce of marijuana for people aged over 21. In order to provide a legal supply it further allows home cultivation of up to six plants and the non profit transfer of an ounce.
the-news.co is firmly against experimenting with any drink or drugs on the grounds that they are all bad for one’s health, and if not to start with, they soon will be. However it equally believes that individual citizens are entitled to learn by their own mistakes and by experiences of life. We do not need an all powerful and overbearing state to take decisions for us besides which we cannot afford it anymore so a large part of government must go.
The images in this post were supplied by a model/photo agency.