Pubdate: Wed, 21 Nov 2001
Source: Otago Daily Times (New Zealand)
Copyright: Allied Press Limited, 2001
Author: Duncan Eddy


BARBARA ELLEN'S article ( ODT , 7.11.01) initially appeared to be an 
objectionable attack on cannabis users, reinforcing a number of negative, 
stereotypes and prejudices. However, it became clear that among Ellen's 
contempt for cannabis and cannabis users was a grudging acceptance that 
cannabis law reform is inevitable and timely.

It's not simply because prohibition is unjust, even though it is. It's not 
just that the law is unworkable, as has been the case for decades. What is 
really going to help move this law reform forward is the fact that many 
successful middle-aged people all over the world do smoke, or have smoked, 
cannabis. Cannabis use can no longer be considered a deviant activity. 
Similarly cannabis prohibition can no longer be considered a legitimate or 
useful policy. The sooner that those who advocate imposing degradation and 
injustice on the lives of hundreds of thousands of Kiwi cannabis smokers 
realise this, the better.

Duncan Eddy

National Organisation for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, Dunedin