Saturday, September 12, 2009

A look inside a medical cannabis dispensary

Check out this video from our friends at Harborside Health Center:

I don't know how anyone can watch this and say that cannabis should continue to be prohibited and sold on the illicit black market.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Latin America and Reform

Check out this great piece on the move to decriminalize drugs in Latin America.
Bruno Avangera, a 40-year-old web designer from Tucumán in Argentina, pauses to relight a half-smoked joint of cannabis. Then he speaks approvingly of "progress and the right decision" by the country's seven supreme court judges, who decided last week that prosecuting people for the private consumption of small amounts of narcotics was unconstitutional.

"Last year three of my friends were caught smoking a spliff in a park and were treated like traffickers," he said. "They went to court, which took six months. One went to jail alongside murderers. The others were sent to rehab, where they were treated for an addiction they didn't have, alongside serious heroin and crack users. It was pointless and destroyed their lives."
Boy, that sure does sound familiar doesn't it? When I was working as a youth counselor that's exactly how I felt. I loved working with young people and helping them to better themselves but it was incredibly frustrating to see teenagers told they are addicts, and that they'll always be addicts, when the truth is - most were just kids experimenting with cannabis and were coerced into treatment because they got caught.

Its time for Latin America to stand up to U.S. drug war politicking. Countries are being torn apart by our demand for drugs - which will never go away. We have a clear choice: embrace harm reduction and legalization or continue to fund drug cartels and ignore real drug abuse problems in the U.S.

Former President of Brazil Calls for Global Cannabis Decrim

Fernando Henrique Cardoso, former President of Brazil, is calling the war on drugs a failure and advocating for global cannabis decriminalization and the implementation of harm reduction policies.

"After decades of overflights, interdictions, spraying and raids on jungle drug factories, Latin America remains the world's largest exporter of cocaine and marijuana," Cardoso writes. "It is producing more and more opium and heroin. It is developing the capacity to mass produce synthetic drugs. Continuing the drugs war with more of the same is ludicrous."

Cardoso, a sociologist, said Argentina, Mexico, Colombia, Bolivia and Ecuador had all now taken steps towards drug law liberalisation and that change was "imminent" in Brazil. The way forward worldwide would involve a "strategy of reaching out, patiently and persistently, to the users and not the continued waging of a misguided and counterproductive war that makes the users, rather than the drug lords, the primary victims," he added.