Viewport width =
August 19, 2013 | by  | in Opinion |
Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

Free Mary Jane

“I hate to advocate drugs…to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.”

— Hunter S. Thompson.

 

80 per cent of New Zealanders between 18–24 are currently considered criminals in our country. 50 per cent of all New Zealanders are too. They did not kill anyone. Or hurt one another. They paid a guy to pay another guy to grow something that would make them feel better. They smoked weed. And in our country, that makes them a criminal: something to be jailed for. Students should not accept such bullshit laws. Marijuana should be legal.

 1.     No one in the world has ever died overdosing from marijuana. They have been helped through cancer. They have relaxed after a shit day at work. They have made the best music ever to touch our ears. But no one has died. Four people died last year from skiing. Random fun fact. Here’s another: more people die on escalators than on airplanes. That fact is irrelevant. My point is this. People can make trade-offs. They know things have harms and risks associated. They do them because it makes them feel better or look better or act better. But currently, the state says no. Don’t even try making such a choice.

 2.     There has been a lot of media scaremongering over the proliferation of synthetic drugs. Children are taking them. John Campbell sought out the only person in the world who had a son who died from K2 and heard his heart-rending story. I’ll accept that these unnatural drugs are dangerous. But unfortunately, they have actually been created because of the prohibition on drugs. There is a demand for having an awesome night that will not go away. And some people try and fill that demand by creating things which are like marijuana but without the same chemical make-up. People take them. They are sold at the local dairy. They cause harm.

3.     Drug laws are racist. Unlike assault where someone is harmed, no one is directly hurt in the process of smoking marijuana. No one reports it happening. But cops have to come down hard. They have to search for people and find people who smoke such a killer drug; who wreak havoc on our communities. What better way to do it than to rely on their prejudices. 13 per cent of those who consume marijuana in New Zealand are Māori. Yet over 60 per cent of those caught are Māori. Random? No. Just racist.

4.     If you are a concerned parent who stays up late worrying about your dear Johnny and his dangerous pot-smoking friend Jim, then you should also legalise drugs. Because when they are illegal, you can’t regulate them. Alcohol has to be checked so that we know the percentage of alcohol in it. It can’t poison you or be laced with cocaine. Marijuana can be. Sometimes, you get drugs from a friend. Other times, they get it from someone with whom you wouldn’t want to party. If it’s legal, we can have age restrictions, content restrictions, quantity restrictions: a better joint.

5.     In fact, drugs are actually stronger now because they are illegal. You are punished based on the quantity of drugs you are holding. If you have too much, you are a supplier and thus get a larger fine or jail time. But quantity is based on weight, not on strength. So, if you are your average drug dealer, you make your stuff stronger shit. The THC level of Marijuana is four times as strong as it was in the 1970s. Cocaine, many say, was actually created because of the prohibition on marijuana. It is easier to hide; harder to detect. On second thought, that is probably the only benefit of prohibition.

6.     Some people probably do have drug problems. Like others have eating problems. Or alcohol problems. Or mental-health problems. And those people should seek help. Drug prohibition puts them in jail next to a rapist rather than offering them the support that they need. Sure they can, at any time before they are caught, go to rehab. But they don’t. Because, quite rightly, they are worried about getting punished. People fear the consequences of seeking help. Shame.

Our current law is nothing other than cultural snobbery by political elites. John Key can drink Moët with his son. He can take him skiing on volcanoes, or surfing at his bach in Hawaii. But our methods to make ourselves happy are somehow unworthy. You are the 80 per cent. Don’t be told by decree from the powers above how you should make your life better. Do like Obama did. Smoke.*

People cheer themselves up in many ways. Some get drunk. Some eat burgers. Some watch Notting Hill. Some go for runs. Some engage in monogamy. Some take medication. Others smoke a joint. Only one of those people is a criminal. Fuck that.

——

*Only if you want to, no pressure, LOL

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

About the Author ()

Comments are closed.

Recent posts

  1. An (im)possible dream: Living Wage for Vic Books
  2. Salient and VUW tussle over Official Information Act requests
  3. One Ocean
  4. Orphanage voluntourism a harmful exercise
  5. Interview with Grayson Gilmour
  6. Political Round Up
  7. A Town Like Alice — Nevil Shute
  8. Presidential Address
  9. Do You Ever Feel Like a Plastic Bag?
  10. Sport
1

Editor's Pick

In Which a Boy Leaves

: - SPONSORED - I’ve always been a fairly lucky kid. I essentially lucked out at birth, being born white, male, heterosexual, to a well off family. My life was never going to be particularly hard. And so my tale begins, with another stroke of sheer luck. After my girlfriend sugge