Friday, November 12, 2010

Cannabis, alcohol, the ALCP and ACT

I said aloud to the TV coverage of the pro-cannabis brigade celebrating marijuana on the grounds of parliament, and later in the Police headquarters foyer where they planned to 'smoke police out' with a cannabis bomb, "Sometimes they do their cause no good." When they flout the law, albeit bad law, flagrantly, it hardens the opposition. When they take the position that cannabis is great, they lose support from people who know from experience that it isn't.

I would take the position that too much cannabis is bad for a person. But so is too much alcohol yet it isn't illegal. If it was, people would still drink to excess and the illegality of their actions, whether imbibing a little or a lot, would only add harm to harm.

Their cause would be better progressed by the use of logic, by appealing to people's innate sense of justice and highlighting the more effective approaches taken towards cannabis use and cultivation in other regimes.

And while on the subject of drugs and alcohol, should we applaud ACT MPs Heather Roy, Hillary Calvert and Sir Roger Douglas for voting against the tightening of liquor laws? As the DomPost points out their opposition could open the door to worse restrictions than what are already on the table. But then this is the story of democracy and parliament. Frequently a party finds itself at a 'damned-if-we-do-and-damned-if-we-don't' impasse. These three have stood on principle; the upholding of freedom for the responsible. I would have done the same knowing there are plenty of people who wouldn't thank me for it.

If their opposition results in less freedom, less freedom is what New Zealanders voted for. ACT can't save the public from themselves. But at least they can hold their heads up and say, we didn't vote for it.


Anonymous said...

Dogheaded & pious from those ACT MPs. It's only 1st reading. They are essentially saying don't go to select committee. Why shouldn't it?

Anonymous said...

You're right Lindsay, and you're wrong anon.
It is time that politicians start to stand for principles instead politics. After all, politics is nothing but the means to deny people their democratic (and fundamental) rights.


mike said...

good on them, although I don't think people have an "innate" idea for justice. they do however have what I call dictator fantasy

Anonymous said...

re: The protest

If that motley collection of atrophied, benefit bludging beatniks and faced-pierced trailer trash is representative of people who smoke grass on a regular basis, then God help us all if it's ever legalized.

What a absolute disgrace.

Richard said...

I take the position that cannabis is great. I know from experience that it is.

Of course, the law reform debate should not be about the merits or otherwise of using cannabis.

pdm said...

anon 6.23pm. I am with you. No way should cannabis be legalised and surely all of those protesters will have been arrested by now.