We cannot ignore the dangers of cannabis use

There are negative impacts of cannabis use, says Bob Britnell

To weed or not to weed, that is the question…

And I pose it as one who has never smoked weed, nor taken any other drug save alcohol, (although I’m not convinced that counts as a drug).

I pose the question because William, now Lord, Hague was suggesting in the paper that the war against cannabis is lost, instead of trying to outlaw and suppress it we should legalise it and bring it under control – and tax it!

That was Tuesday. Wednesday brought a swift rebuttal from a former White House drug policy adviser setting out the American experience of why that would be the wrong approach and pointing out the world of difference between legalising cannabinoid products for medical usage and legalising cannabis for recreational use.

Apparently with legalisation drug selling goes legit and mainstream and you can now buy cannabis jelly babies, soft drinks and ice cream!

In the USA state legalisation has gone hand in hand with increased usage among teenagers and with a noticeable increase in cannabis affected fatal motoring accidents, up 90% in Colorado.

We know that cannabis is implicated in a significant increase in the risk of suicide, schizophrenia, psychosis and the use of other drugs, why would we want to do anything to make it easier to get hold of or more socially acceptable; and that last is the point, should it be socially acceptable?

We live in a world where politicians talk about the problems of drug usage, whether cannabis or stronger drugs but little is actually done about it.

Given the side effects and the way drugs ruin lives why don’t we have a concerted campaign against drug use in the way we did against tobacco use?

I have this nasty suspicion that we don’t have the campaign because the politicians who would have to kick it off might have to admit to youthful indiscretions themselves and would be pilloried in the press as hypocrites.


  1. Legalise cannabis for genuine medical use (not “anxiety” and rubbish like that).

    Anyone that uses it in a public space gets an immediate custodial sentence.


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