Skip to content Skip to main navigation

News

Get a new bike from $50 per week

Legalise It?

By loubird22 16 October 2010 39

As a US citizen, I maintain voting rights even while living here in Australia. Midterm elections are in November and one of the big items on the California ballot is the legalisation of marijuana for anyone over 21, no medical script needed. I am sure you can imagine the intense campaigns happening on both sides of the issue.

I am interested to hear what some of your opinions are on this if that were to happen here. Would you support a medical marijuana scheme, full legalisation, etc?

Weed

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

What’s Your opinion?


Please login to post your comments, or connect with
39 Responses to
Legalise It?
Filter
Showing only Website comments
Order
Newest to Oldest
Oldest to Newst
astrojax 8:52 am 10 Nov 10

which way did it go? didn’t see any coverage of this…

astrojax 11:31 am 25 Oct 10

Tooks said :

Pommy bastard brings up some good points (esp in #20). My main concern about legalising cannabis is that I believe its use would rise significantly, especially among young people (under 18s).

the experience of portugal and other places simply denies this statement – there is no elevated use when legalised… so consider your concerns allayed.

and am glad loubird finally popped back to tell us which way his/her vote is going… we’ll be watching avidly.

loubird22 2:40 pm 18 Oct 10

Great comments so far and I was somewhat surprised to see that so far 46% of you support the end of substance prohibition and subsequent taxation.
I find when speaking to people about this that the majority of people compare it with the legalisation of alcohol (and the massive ramifications the prohibition of it had in the US), which I find to be both good and bad at the same time. In terms of related crime, it is certainly comparable.
The latest statistics I heard was that 40% of Mexican cartel revenue came from cannabis. That is massive. Imagine what effect legalisation in the US would have on that. I also saw a news report a few weeks ago (maybe on the ABC?) that the majority of illegal drugs coming into Australia from overseas are actually coming from Mexico. I found that quite surprising so perhaps that 40% cut in their revenue could have ramifications here (potentially good or bad). Though personal cannabis use is quite tolerated here in the ACT, it is not throughout most of the US and the prisons are packed with people in with simple possession, even some who were using it legally according to state law with a medical prescription, but the federal drug agency will still charge them and lock them up.
The actual regulation of sale can also be compared to alcohol – currently, it is much easier for a young teen to get pot than alcohol. Of course there will still be kids who talk someone into buying it for them or they find it in their parent’s sock drawer.
In terms of the social effect, however, I don’t think it can be compared to alcohol. Alcohol is in no way a good substance despite the massive acceptance and use of it. So many people die each year due to drunk driving and alcohol poisoning, not to mention the amount of crime that occurs under the influence – increased domestic abuse, rapes, etc. There has never been a recorded death directly linked with Marijuana use. Apples and oranges when it comes to comparing with alcohol. Domestic abuse has in fact a negative correlation with marijuana use.
It seems to me the benefits far outweigh the negatives. We have a natural substance that does not have any known major long-term side effects for the general population that is not only fun and relaxing, but can also help those in pain without the risk of overdose or mixing with the wrong thing or being addictive. Not to mention the tax benefits for big brother and the potential crippling of the deadly drug cartels.

farq 9:47 am 18 Oct 10

“Here is my final point. About drugs, about alcohol, about pornography and smoking and everything else. What business is it of yours what I do, read, buy, see, say, think, who I fuck, what I take into my body – as long as I do not harm another human being on this planet?”-Bill Hicks

“Why is marijuana against the law? It grows naturally upon our planet. Doesn’t the idea of making nature against the law seem to you a bit… paranoid? It’s like saying God made a mistake.”-Bill Hicks

“Why is pot against the law? It wouldn’t be because anyone can grow it, and therefore you can’t make a profit off it, would it?”-Bill Hicks

Thumper 9:30 am 18 Oct 10

Well, there’s no doubt about it then.

Possession and trafficking of salt should be punishable by death.

john87_no1 9:19 am 18 Oct 10

if you don’t like my fire
then don’t come around
cause I’m gonna burn one down
yes I’m gonna burn one down

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyk2-ezzE4U

GregW 9:10 am 18 Oct 10

Spideydog said :

People that say that Cannabis, ecstasy or LSD use is safer than “table salt” is deluding themselves.

Politicians tend to listen to the concerns of the general public before those of scientists, which is a shame when often people don’t bother to educate themselves before forming an opinion.

Source: Projected Effect of Dietary Salt Reductions on Future Cardiovascular Disease

Reducing dietary salt by 3 g per day is projected to reduce the annual number of new cases of CHD by 60,000 to 120,000, stroke by 32,000 to 66,000, and myocardial infarction by 54,000 to 99,000 and to reduce the annual number of deaths from any cause by 44,000 to 92,000. All segments of the population would benefit, with blacks benefiting proportionately more, women benefiting particularly from stroke reduction, older adults from reductions in CHD events, and younger adults from lower mortality rates. The cardiovascular benefits of reduced salt intake are on par with the benefits of population-wide reductions in tobacco use, obesity, and cholesterol levels. A regulatory intervention designed to achieve a reduction in salt intake of 3 g per day would save 194,000 to 392,000 quality-adjusted life-years and $10 billion to $24 billion in health care costs annually. Such an intervention would be cost-saving even if only a modest reduction of 1 g per day were achieved gradually between 2010 and 2019 and would be more cost-effective than using medications to lower blood pressure in all persons with hypertension.

Compared to SAMHSA records in the US showing 9 deaths from MDMA (and only MDMA, most MDMA related deaths (of which there were 76 in 2001) are due to contaminants in the black market pills, or other more dangerous drugs consumed simultaneously).

You can adjust these per capita if you wish, I won’t bother due to the difficulty in determining the actual number of MDMA users. You will find though that at long term typical intakes MDMA is literally safer than salt.

Spartacus 12:54 am 18 Oct 10

How many deaths a year are related to Heart Disease which salt is a major contributing factor?
How many deaths ever are related to Cannabis, Pure MDMA or LSD?

😉

Thumper 8:42 pm 17 Oct 10

let me try that again.

Cannabis, ecstasy or LSD use is safer than “table salt

That’s the one I meant 🙂

Thumper 8:41 pm 17 Oct 10

“People that say that Cannabis, ecstasy or LSD use is safer than “table salt” is deluding themselves.”

I serious don’t think I’ve ever read a more stupid statement than that.

fgzk 8:01 pm 17 Oct 10

Leave it all as is. Stable pricing, good service, good product, easy credit and no advertising. The government and private enterprise, as drug dealers, will only stuff it all up.

farnarkler 6:30 pm 17 Oct 10

#23 Tooks you’re right. The Dutch aren’t a country full of pot heads. I’m sure a lot of them enjoy dope but the ‘buzz’ of taking something illegal isn’t there so most have a laugh at those of us who indulge a bit too much and gibber while wandering down the Damrak.

Tooks 3:02 pm 17 Oct 10

Pommy bastard said :

Tooks said :

Remember, it’s already decriminalised in the ACT, so unless your growing pounds of the stuff, or dealing it, you have little to worry about if you’re smoking it in your own home.

This is a myth.

It’s illegal to grow it, possess it or sell it. Possession of less than 25g is punishable by a fine of one penalty unit, possession of more than that is punishable by up to 50 penalty units, 2 years imprisonment, or both.

It’s not a myth – I said it was decriminalised, I didn’t say it was legal.

Tooks 2:47 pm 17 Oct 10

Pommy bastard said :

Tooks said :

Remember, it’s already decriminalised in the ACT, so unless your growing pounds of the stuff, or dealing it, you have little to worry about if you’re smoking it in your own home.

This is a myth.

It’s illegal to grow it, possess it or sell it. Possession of less than 25g is punishable by a fine of one penalty unit, possession of more than that is punishable by up to 50 penalty units, 2 years imprisonment, or both.

The point I was trying make was that if you’re just a casual smoker, the police are unlikely to bust your door down to seize that packed bong sitting on your coffee table.

Also, if you’re found in possession of a small amount, it can be dealt with by SCON (simple cannabis offence notice), rather than going to court – hence no criminal conviction.

Pommy bastard 1:02 pm 17 Oct 10

JUDGES and magistrates in NSW are appalled at the epidemic level of alcohol-fuelled crime in their courts, which accounts for more than half of their work and includes violence they never imagined when they started on the bench.

They revealed their concerns as part of an investigation involving 22 on-the-record interviews with judges and magistrates.

Alcohol plays a role in 50 to 60 per cent of the nearly 300,000 criminal cases that come before the state’s Local Courts each year, Chief Magistrate Graeme Henson said.

http://www.smh.com.au/national/judges-fed-up-with-drunken-violence-clogging-our-courts-20101016-16oap.html

Here’s a little anecdotal tale, believe it if you wish or not.

In the area of Devon UK I used to live there were four night clubs. Three were booze barns, one was known as a “rave” venue which only sold soft drinks and water. During a hearing it was revealed by police that on an average Friday or Saturday, they had between 5-7 call outs, normally for violence and vandalism, to each of the booze barns. The ambulance service gave the three booze barns 8-10 call outs on a weekend, normally with police protection.

The rave club had on average two call outs by police/ambulance every four months.

Guess which club the police were at court for, successfully, getting shut down?

Pommy bastard 12:54 pm 17 Oct 10

Tooks said :

Remember, it’s already decriminalised in the ACT, so unless your growing pounds of the stuff, or dealing it, you have little to worry about if you’re smoking it in your own home.

This is a myth.

It’s illegal to grow it, possess it or sell it. Possession of less than 25g is punishable by a fine of one penalty unit, possession of more than that is punishable by up to 50 penalty units, 2 years imprisonment, or both.

Selling cannabis (or possessing it for sale) can get up to 500 penalty units or 5 years imprisonment, or both.

Growing one or two plants, without hydroponics or artificial heat or light, is punishable by one penalty unit. Growing three or more, or artificially growing one or two, is punishable by 200 penalty units or 2 years imprisonment.

Growing a ‘large commercial quantity’ (currently 125kg) can get you life imprisonment. A ‘commercial quantity’ (25kg) gets 25 years or 2500 penalty units, or both. For a trafficable quantity (300g) it’s 10 years or 1000 penalty units, or both. For less than that, it’s 300 penalty units or 3 years.

These offences require that the accused intended to sell some part of some of the plants, or knew that someone else would. But this is assumed if the quantity is at least 300g (so you would have to prove that you didn’t intend to sell anything, rather than the prosecution proving that you did).

And I think that about covers it. Oh, and a penalty unit is currently $110 for a person, or $550 for a corporation. So to work out the maximum fine, multiply the number of penalty units by 110.

Source(s):
Schedule 1 of the Criminal Code Regulations 2005 sets out the various quantities of drugs: http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/act/consol_reg/ccr2005206/sch1.html

Part 10 of the Drugs of Dependance Act 1989 contains some cannabis offences: http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/act/consol_act/doda1989169/

The more serious ones are in Chapter 6 of the Criminal Code 2002:
http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/act/consol_act/cc200294/

Tooks 11:01 am 17 Oct 10

MrPC said :

Typically people under 18 will want to do something more if they are told they can’t do it.

The only people (#21 Tooks) who think decriminalising/legalising something will make children want to use more clearly either aren’t parents or aren’t very successful parents. Saying no is what makes them want it more. Saying yes or not caring will cause them to lose interest either immediately or after the first few attempts.

A very simplistic argument, and not correct.

“Saying yes or not caring will cause them to lose interest either immediately or after the first few attempts”

Yep, that certainly works with alcohol…Wait – no it doesn’t.

“Saying no is what makes them want it more.”

Bollocks.
Example: Being told I shouldn’t drink when underage didn’t make me want it more. In fact, had the legal drinking age been lowered to 15 or 16, you can bet my drinking would’ve increased significantly.

The appeal of smoking drugs when I was in high school wasn’t because it was illegal (“saying no”) – that wasn’t even a part of my though process. If anything, I would’ve been less apprehensive about using cannabis (especially the first time) had it been legal.

MrPC 10:40 am 17 Oct 10

Typically people under 18 will want to do something more if they are told they can’t do it.

The only people (#21 Tooks) who think decriminalising/legalising something will make children want to use more clearly either aren’t parents or aren’t very successful parents. Saying no is what makes them want it more. Saying yes or not caring will cause them to lose interest either immediately or after the first few attempts.

Requiring them to line up in a pharmacy with the sick and the elderly and other users would probably decrease drug use. The current dealers would be put out of business as even taxed the pharmacies would undercut them significantly. That would remove the thrill of buying them covertly. The thrill of using them would be lessened as well, not least of which because the bragging rights will wither away and die as availability becomes commonplace.

Tooks 10:23 am 17 Oct 10

Pommy bastard brings up some good points (esp in #20). My main concern about legalising cannabis is that I believe its use would rise significantly, especially among young people (under 18s). I’ve seen way too many people suffer from long term effects of smoking the stuff to believe it’s a harmless, or mostly harmless drug. I’m not only talking about mental illness here, but changes in personality over time, lack of focus, lack of motivation etc.

Also, a black market of sorts would still exist, because presumably the legal sale of the drug would be limited to those who are 18 and over.

Remember, it’s already decriminalised in the ACT, so unless your growing pounds of the stuff, or dealing it, you have little to worry about if you’re smoking it in your own home.

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2018 Region Group Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
the-riotact.com | aboutregional.com.au | b2bmagazine.com.au | thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site