"To keep a lamp burning we have to put oil in it."
"The sale of...[marijuana] for personal use in the Netherlands has not given rise to levels of use significantly higher than in countries which pursue a highly repressive policy."
Drugs Policy in the Netherlands: Continuity and Change, 1995
"The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools."
What's in it for You?
It's a good question. After all, what would be the point of spending an hour writing to people who aren't going to take any notice?
The point is they will. Very few people write to complain about anything and those that do get due consideration (see the feedback page of Fax your MP
To give you an idea of how few people it takes to make a difference take the figures for the most controversial adverts of 2001. The FCUK campaign received only 142 complaints (Guardian 2 May 02
) yet these mere hundred and fifty people made a noise millions heard.
The reason you should bother, though, is because we each have a responsibility to secure our own freedom. And by so doing we secure the freedom of others. Freedoms have to be fought for and are not easily won. They are only ever achieved when enough people rise up together.
There comes a time in life when we have to stand up and be counted. If you're a cannabis smoker, or if you just believe in freedom, this is it. No one coffee shop will change the law and all coffee shops need help. This is a crucial time for us because if we don't seize this opportunity now we could wait many more years for another one.
So if you believe any one of the following is true:
- That prohibition has not worked and legalisation has merit.
- That a regulated market provides a better safety net than an unregulated one.
- That cannabis brings relief to people in great pain
- That cannabis users should have no less freedom than alcohol and tobacco users have
- That police should concentrate more on crimes of violence.
- Or any of the many other reasons
Then please tell your police, your council and your MP.
And urge two other people to do the same.