The tipping points towards cannabis reform are all occurring rapidly now. The Associate-Minister agrees, the Police agree – it’s like flat earth’s admitting the Sun is the centre of the Solar System but it’s not enough.
Decriminalisation is pointless if there isn’t a regulated market taking taxation and mitigating the impacts of that decriminalisation. The only reason the Associate-Minister and the Police agree to decriminalisation is because places in America where cannabis is regulated are making a mockery of their previous claims that cannabis reform can’t work.
Now is not the time for cowardice on cannabis reform, decriminalisation is not the answer. Legalisation in a tightly regulated market that favours small to medium size local business over vast corporations which is taxed and strictly R20 is the solution.
If we are going to make a change, merely having Police turn a blind eye when they catch someone won’t go anywhere near far enough. The Police have admitted last year that they are racist towards Maori, if it’s just Police description, then it will end up being just as racist as it currently is.
Legalisation allows real restrictions on sales, allows medicinal cannabis, allows taxation and allows a local market to grow and create real economic growth while robbing organised crime of a source of income.
Decriminalisation is merely begrudging acknowledgement from those authorities in society who have benefited from prohibition that their immoral, racist and destructive war on drugs has been an utter failure.
Let’s be brave and seek an adult answer on cannabis reform rather than a child’s one still clinging to failed solutions.