Cannabis Report Sparks Call for Debate

Cannabis Report Sparks Call for Debate
Posted by FoM on January 17, 2002 at 16:23:10 PT
Politicians are divided on how to tackle drugs
Source: BBC News
Over nine million French people, around 16% of their country's population, have used cannabis, a report has revealed. It adds that almost 60% of boys and 43% of girls aged 18 have already tried the illegal drug. On the day of the publication of the Drugs and Drug Addiction Observatory's annual report, Justice Minister Marylise Lebranchu called for a debate on its decriminalisation. 
"I think that starting the debate would not be a bad thing, because it has never been started properly," she said on France Inter radio. "It will have to be taken to a conclusion one day," she said, but added: "I have never known how to reply to the question about decriminalisation." The report says that 9.5 million French people say they have already tried cannabis, while 3.3 million reportedly use it regularly, French La Chaine Info television said. It adds that it has become difficult or even impossible to treat cannabis in the same way as other illegal drugs.  Depressing Figures  While the consumption of tobacco has fallen and the consumption of alcohol has remained stable over the last 10 years, the use of antidepressants and other psychotropic drugs has jumped up by 70%, the report adds. And one woman in four and 14% of men use antidepressants daily. The number of French tobacco smokers has fallen from 40 to 36% of the population, but more 17-year-old girls than boys now smoke. Smokers consume an average of 14 cigarettes a day and 60,000 people a year die from the effects of tobacco.  Record-Breaking Drinkers Almost nine million people drink every day, and France has the highest rate of alcohol consumption in Europe, with 45,000 people dying from its effects annually, according to Professor Claude Got, chairman of the Observatory's scientific body. Ecstasy and cocaine consumption have also increased over the last 10 years, while the consumption of heroin has stabilised, the report says. The statistics came out as the French daily Liberation published a survey on the April presidential election candidates' views on reforming the drug laws. A spokesman for President Jacques Chirac's RPR party said that the president had always been against decriminalisation. A spokesman for the Socialist Party supported its justice minister's suggestion of a debate and called for a distinction between the use and trafficking of drugs. However Green Party candidate Noel Mamere said that he was in favour of the legalisation of soft drugs. BBC Monitoring, based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. Source: BBC News (UK Web)Published: Thursday, January 17, 2002Copyright: 2002 BBC Website: Contact: Articles:Reform Drug Laws for Our Children's Sake Model for UK Drug Laws 
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Comment #2 posted by QcStrt on January 17, 2002 at 19:49:17 PT
          Way out of line
I just wander what office of the govt. is making money from the drugs that they are selling 
and for what purpose, there so many Smoke screen's out there, Like the C.I.A. that got some many Hooked on drugs back 
then. They ( C.I.A ) say this was of there own doing. so they could push the probation on the legislative bodies for there own 
and the D.E.A's It would appear that the DEA is beeing paid off by the Pharmaceuticals Companys of the U.S.A. and in so 
striping the people of there Right's and Constitution.
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Comment #1 posted by mayan on January 17, 2002 at 17:07:03 PT
Try A Different Approach
"A spokesman for Jacques Chirac's RPR party said that the president had always been against decriminalization."But is Chirac so stubborn as to continue a policy of prohibition which is obviously a complete disaster? Just because he has always held such a stance does that mean he will always hold that stance? As human beings we have the ability to observe & learn. How can he not see that a different approach is at least worth a try? Likewise, when will the U.S. Government realize that a diferent approach is necessary for this society to continue to survive? The war on drugs only divides people & a society that is so divided cannot sustain itself for long. Something's got to give.
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