Belgium agrees to legalize pot
February 28, 2001 7:19 AM   Subscribe

Belgium agrees to legalize pot Will this change in the legalization of pot change in our country too some 75 years from now?
posted by Postroad (11 comments total)

 
75?! My estimation is 15-20 years there will be widespread legalization for medicinal use, and soon thereafter broad decriminalization.
posted by sonofsamiam at 7:23 AM on February 28, 2001


Damn. I'll be dead in 75 years. :|
posted by ewwgene at 7:23 AM on February 28, 2001


legalization is really the answer? I've read somewhere that the places that did legalize turned into hell holes and drug use went up. True? False? I guess drugs are easy to get these days anyway.
posted by tiaka at 7:44 AM on February 28, 2001


I think based on the fact that Belgium's follow the lead of the Netherlands indicates that it's been a reasonable success in the Netherlands.

The law also allows the cultivation of marijuana plants for personal use.

This, I think, is the most important aspect of the law. Keep a crime to sell it, that's fine, but let me tend my garden.
posted by cCranium at 7:57 AM on February 28, 2001


if you go to the netherlands you'll quickly discover that it's anything but a hell hole. that's just more war-on-drugs propaganda; don't buy it.
posted by cfj at 11:16 AM on February 28, 2001


Hear hear, cC!! If people were allowed to grow for personal use the criminal element would disappear.
posted by terrapin at 11:18 AM on February 28, 2001


terrapin: Well, probably not. I'd be willing to bet that there'd still be a lot of teens looking to purchase rather than bumpin' mom and/or dad's tomatos out of the garden.

But it would seriously cut back the demand, and therefore the criminal element, I agree.
posted by cCranium at 1:03 PM on February 28, 2001


Aw, why didn't they legalize pot when I lived in Belgium. It's not fair. (Then again, I was six years old when I lived in Belgium...)

A 15-20 year timetable for legalization in the US sounds reasonable, but reason doesn't have much of a part to play in the drug war. My guess is that it will be legal in Canada and the rest of Europe long before it's legal in the U.S.
posted by Loudmax at 1:20 PM on February 28, 2001


A step in the right direction. Is it just me or are most countries pushing cigarettes towards illegality, or just making it damn expensive?
posted by Zool at 10:18 PM on February 28, 2001


I've read somewhere that the places that did legalize turned into hell holes and drug use went up.

Was that little Tucker Carlson, by any chance? I caught him talking about the Vietnam on Drugs before leaving the US, and he described a "filthy" Amsterdam unrecognisible from my time working there.

Anyway, there was the famous case of Zurich's "Needle Park" in the early 90s, which didn't work. But that was for heroin, not soft drugs. And as the link suggests, the alternative solution adopted by the Swiss -- carefully controlled and supervised heroin prescription -- seems to have offset the social problems of addiction, and provided useful evidence on a subject that's usually hard to study scientifically.

In the US, the tide on drug use is already turning, I think. At least, that's what I suspect from the "...or any symptoms where cannabis may be useful" adverts in the SF press for medicinal prescription. But it'll take a few more lurches towards modernity -- for instance, a sensible drinking age that doesn't criminalise college students -- before that happens.
posted by holgate at 1:02 AM on March 1, 2001


Was that little Tucker Carlson, by any chance? I caught him talking about the Vietnam on Drugs before leaving the US, and he described a "filthy" Amsterdam unrecognisible from my time working there.

His big kick now is free heroin in Zurich, which he has proceeded to take entirely out of context. Gov. Gary Johnson was on their program, and he mentioned a program in Zurich that gave people who were already heroin addicts prescriptions to get, well, free heroin. Which caused crime to go down quite a bit, because these people weren't robbing people and so on to get their heroin. Carlson's response was something like "You seem like a libertarian. You can't like the government giving out heroin..." Which makes no sense, since Johnson is 1.) not a libertarian and 2.) even though many of his positions are libertarian, they don't all have to be. A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.
posted by dagnyscott at 6:22 AM on March 1, 2001


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