Pubdate: Thu, 05 Feb 2015
Source: Jamaica Observer (Jamaica)
Copyright: 2015 The Jamaica Observer Ltd,
Author: Robert Sharpe


Regarding Louis Moyston's excellent column in The Agenda of Sunday, 
February 1, 2015, Jamaica should by no means let the petty concerns 
of the 'drug war' official, William Brownfield of the US Bureau of 
International Narcotics and Law Enforcement, stall ganja law reform.

An obsolete United Nations treaty passed in ignorance back in 1961 
that violates human rights conventions is no reason for Jamaica to 
remain stuck in the past. A far more important US representative is 
US President Barack Obama.

President Obama has given the green light to cannabis regulation in 
US states that have voted to tax cannabis sales and restrict youth 
access. Jamaica would be wise to capitalise on this green light, just 
in case a less enlightened leader follows Obama and uses US's 
superpower status to insist that cannabis consumers be treated as 
criminals and put in cages.

United Nations treaties that mandate such nonsense are not worth the 
paper they are printed on and should be disregarded as a matter of 
principle. The US routinely disregards United Nations treaties when 
it is convenient to do so.

Why should Jamaica be forced to uphold cannabis prohibition that is 
rooted in racism and ignorance? The global war on cannabis is a 
failed cultural inquisition, not an evidence-based public health campaign.

Robert Sharpe, MPA

Policy Analyst, Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, DC
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