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UK Legalise Cannabis E-Petition: Health – Sign & Share!

December 13, 2011

The truth about cannabis is overwhelmingly clear now. Unfortunately it still needs to be brought to the attention of the public and those to whom the issue doesn’t really affect. We must, as cannabis consumers, not be apathetic about this process; we can’t let ourselves slip into the frame of mind where we say “ah, I’ll do it later”. Otherwise we’re honestly likely to forget, especially with all the distractions and pointless virals that spread around the internet. Why not make this e-petition aiming to legalise cannabis possession the biggest thing on every social media network for the UK?

And what about off the internet?

The link is easy enough to share and if you read it a couple of times you may even remember it! http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/29

Signing this e-petition does not put your name down on a list that says you are a cannabis user; anyone can support this common sense request – you do not have to be a smoker to support ending cannabis prohibition. The petition reads:

“Responsible department: Home Office

A desire for the House of Commons to give a comprehensive debate regarding the merits of legalising cannabis. A need for Parliament to discuss the consequences of legalisation on health, the police force, the economy and our civil liberties. An aim to classify cannabis in line with drugs such as alcohol and tobacco.”

Pretty straight forward, really. We want our MPs to discuss this in the House of Commons; taking into consideration the effects of legalisation on:

 Health

Cannabis is medicine to millions in the UK. Those suffering with Crohn’s Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, cancer, neuropathic pain, Autism, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, Epilepsy, Diabetes and depression could benefit from a natural herbal medicine that has been effectively used for at least the past 5000 years. The science is out there, you simply have to google the word cannabis and any illness and you will find some good evidence of its effectiveness from patients and Doctors alike – not to mention the scientific studies and papers published with findings backing up those patients claims.

Cannabis is just safer than alcohol and tobacco. This cannot be denied now – the best thing about the proof behind the safety of cannabis especially compared to other “legal” and “illegal” drugs (adding pharmaceuticals as a category to the other two legally available drugs mentioned) is many of the scientists that are responsible for these now culture famous studies originally intended to set out to prove cannabis was more harmful. The very Godfather of Medical Marijuana himself, Dr Lester Grinspoon, a strong Clear-UK supporter and the author of Marijuana Reconsidered, was of the conventional belief that cannabis was harmful and those that smoked the drug were putting their health at serious risk. As you would expect from a top doctor he put in the research and low and behold discovered the truth… cannabis was a safe substance to use and even further than that – it had serious medicinal benefits, which he unfortunately had to learn the hard way when his son went on to develop leukemia.

In the UK NHS figures for 2005 revealed that 14,982 people died from alcohol related deaths and the cost to the NHS was £2.7 billion this year in 2011, that’s a £1 billion increase on top of what was spent in 2001. Meanwhile in 2009, 750 people were admitted to hospital for cannabis, none of them died and the cost to the NHS and the tax payer is so minimal it cannot be found. Alcohol advertising is currently coming under the spotlight for targeting children. At the same time the cannabis law reform lobby are trying to change the laws to regulate cannabis so it is less available to children. Currently the only ID a cannabis dealer wants is a £20 note. That isn’t keeping those that are most vulnerable out of harm’s way. Youth surveys in America show that it is easier to get cannabis than alcohol or cigarettes and the reason they give is because they don’t need ID.

Most people who are against cannabis argue that it is damaging to health but as we established earlier the science is out there, smoked cannabis is being used as medicine and no detrimental effects are being reported, this form of ingestion would surely have shown its harms in the 50 years that we have seen such a prevalence in its use. ‘Lung cancer’ we hear a newspaper say? Take a look at the research of Dr Donald Tashkin who set out to prove whether or not cannabis smoking gave you a greater chance of developing cancers… The result? In fact if you don’t smoke anything at all you have a slightly higher risk of going on to naturally develop more cancers in the head, neck, and skin than the dreaded pot smokers – did the media report this with such enthusiasm as the always debunkable stories they do run on the negative sides of cannabis?

Psychosis is the common argument here in Britain though, with the Daily Mail’s favorite “just one joint causes schizophrenia” headlines influencing politicians to the point that the downgrading of cannabis to a class c from class b was reversed in 2009 after only four years of what many thought was decriminalization. It wasn’t – you were still branded a criminal for choosing something safer than legally available, socially harmful substances. The Keele University report commissioned by the Government for the Advisory Council for the Misuse of Drugs in 2009 took a fully comprehensive look at all the reports and publications on the subject (they used 600,00 people in this study – by far the largest ever conducted) and concluded that there is no causal link between cannabis use and psychosis. Unfortunately the same Government and the current one still refuses to ever quote this study that they spent a large amount of tax payers’ money conducting, most probably because it found out and reported the opposite of what they had intended for it to find out. But the public remain misinformed by their Government, which in 2011 lie to quote this:

“The ACMD last published a report on cannabis in 2008 (“Cannabis: Classification and Public Health”). In this report the ACMD renewed its earlier advice that the use of cannabis is a significant public health issue. Cannabis can unquestionably cause harm to both individuals and society”.

In 2007 the same ACMD was responsible for publishing a top 20 list of the most harmful drugs, number one being the most harmful. Alcohol ranked in at fifth place while cannabis lingered quite a way behind at 11th. Professor David Nutt, chair of the ACMD at the time, was sacked and the Government eventually reclassified cannabis as a class c drug again against the advice of its own advisory council.

Whilst the Government continue to publicize that cannabis has no medicinal benefit in herbal form they have also provided a license to GW Pharmaceuticals giving them the unique power to grow at least 20 tonnes of cannabis per year in the UK to produce a “cannabis-based” medicine called Sativex, which is available on prescription to patients in the UK mainly suffering with MS and chronic pain. The progress to having more medical forms of cannabis is welcomed and encouraged but at the moment the price of Sativex – around 1000 times greater than the production cost – is so high that local health authorities have decided to ban it throughout most regions of the UK. This is denying safe access to the cannabis medicine that these patients need and deserve. At the same time, GW’s legal cannabis greenhouse farm is growing continuously through the seasons with supplemented lighting and the finest care. In contrast, regular home growers and cannabis consumers are raided, arrested and put in front of the courts for doing the same thing. With all of the science that GW have published over the last decade it is seriously hard to deny that anyone growing cannabis for themselves can be doing it for the same reason, for medicine, and with the same safety as the large corporate pharmaceutical company and the fact that licenses are available to be applied for in the UK (but are rejected if you try) just shows the extent of the unfairness and inequality that the Home Office are into.

The same compounds that are blamed for causing damage to the brain by the Government are actually produced in the brain. THC has a human synthesized version known as Anandamide and CBDs counterpart is 2-AG. Your body needs these self created compounds to live otherwise we go on to develop all of these age related and autoimmune diseases mentioned multiple times in this text. We have over 20,000 studies on cannabis for the Government to use “we don’t know enough about the way it works” is an insult to intelligence and to science, the scientists that conducted the studies and to the rats that were subject to things against their will.

Pharmaceutical drugs do not always work for patients. Conventional medicine is overly complicated, much of the time is responsible for causing other more serious diseases and needs balancing out with other pharmaceuticals so that you don’t die or go on to develop an incurable cancer. In 16 states across America and Washington DC patients are able to have a license to allow them to buy, possess and in many cases grow their own cannabis.

In Europe we have seen an increasing number of countries either decriminalize cannabis or all drugs and even start to regulate it, Spain, Portugal, Holland, Switzerland, Italy, Israel and even the Czech republic have more sensible policies than the supposedly progressive UK. Since the Dutch have had a tolerance policy towards cannabis and allowed coffee shops to sell it with some regulations in place heroin use has remained stable where in the same time (since 1976) heroin use has shot up 2000% in the UK. Why? Because putting cannabis in the same market place as heroin is a bad idea and gives the impression to less educated customers that it might be so bad because cannabis isn’t doing anything bad. This is known as the gateway theory and it really only exists in a world where hard drugs are mixed with herbs.

The truth is out there we need to bring it to the attention of the greater public. This is not as hard as you might think, just remember it’s just a conversation about a plant. Let’s get talking about it and then keep up the pace.

Subscribe to this blog to read the next sections of the argument over the following days;

-Police Force

-Economy

-Civil Liberties

…and after you have signed the petition, please consider sharing it on all your social networking sites, e-mail it to your family members and university clubs. Grab the poster and print it off and post it in visible areas so it will get seen and reach the people that will back our campaign. Reach out to the people that haven’t made their minds up yet before the Daily Mail come out with some more reefer madness and sway them in the wrong direction.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Lee Jones permalink
    December 14, 2011 6:02 pm

    It is stupid how the government seems to want to keep away any sensible solutions to our countrys problems. They are quite content to sit and watch the lower classes poison themselves with perfectly legal, yet, very harmful, tax rich products, yet you can’t smoke a harmless plant that to my knowledge has never harmed anyone! It annoys me because if they legalized it not only would it generate tax based income for the economy it would also phase out the criminal element, provide much needed relief for many people who are suffering from a wide range of illnesses and, it would provide the recreational smokers of cannabis a far cleaner and better product that would be free from the greedy criminal elements “cutting” and tampering.

    • jordan sullivan permalink
      December 15, 2011 9:38 pm

      Exactly man! Its all about the people. If that isn’t enough what about all the money saved from prosecuting those who chose to use it, for whatever reason..It just comes back the pharmaceutical “industry”..who i think would have to make way for dispensaries. There is so so much evidence & that you seem to get so engrosed in & that you forget that; it’s just not common knowledge to everyone and the truth remains hidden. Feels like we’ve all been brainwashed. Onwards & upwards now surely, legalise! Hemp ><

  2. jordan sullivan permalink
    December 15, 2011 9:41 pm

    apologies, realied i have repeated what’s been said, needless to say; i strongly agree and want to do my bit 🙂

  3. Tonbar permalink
    December 18, 2011 7:00 pm

    This petition will not let me sign it. It just keeps taking me back to the same page and offering a new captcha.

  4. alex sevas permalink
    December 28, 2011 2:41 pm

    Supporting it!!!

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