Pubdate: Wed, 20 Jun 2001
Source: Southland Times (New Zealand)
Copyright: 2001, Southland Times Company Ltd.
Author: Nandor Tanczos
Bookmark: (Cannabis)
Bookmark: (Decrim/Legalization)


I write to correct an error in your article "Tanczos visits city to discuss 
cannabis law" (The Southland Times, June 9).

Your paper reports me as saying that "the cannabis market needs to be 
regulated by taxing it" and that "licensing people to grow and sell 
cannabis...would also help." In fact, I said that there are a number of 
policy options before us, including "instant fines" and "regulating the 
market." However, instant fines lead to "net widening" and do nothing to 
address the problems of an illegal market.

Regulation, on the other hand, while allowing the market to be controlled, 
runs the risk of encouraging the promotion of cannabis.

The model that the Green Party is advocating is one that would allow adults 
(over 18 years old) to grow, possess and use cannabis for personal use.

Cannabis would come under the Smokefree Environments Act -- driving under 
the influence would be illegal -- and the money saved from not arresting 
people for personal use should be put towards a comprehensive, well-planned 
and evaluated drug education strategy.

The Green Party would not like to see cannabis use being encouraged in the 
way alcohol use is aggressively promoted in our society now.

We do want to stop the criminalisation of the majority of New Zealanders 
who admit having used it.

Nandor Tanczos, Green MP
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MAP posted-by: Terry Liittschwager