Wednesday, 19 July 2017

My message to Paul Flynn MP after his call for cannabis in parliament protests

I would like to thank you for calling for people to come to Parliament and smoke cannabis, but there are a couple of points that I would like to raise. 
Firstly: will you be joining the protest, not by consuming cannabis (the law is not about consumption per se), but by OPENLY possessing cannabis in an amount that a consumer may have such as 7 to 10 grams, maybe some hash and some oil? 
 Are you aware of the value of cannabis as a preventative measure? 
Are you planning some sort of fund to pay fines and compensation to protesters that get arrested or have their cannabis confiscated? 
What about repeat offenders, those that ay defy a court order banning them from Parliament? 
If poeple are locked up, what support will you be able to give?
The law, which does not distinguish between consumers (medical, religious or others), should be fought without such distinctions so that law applies equally to all adults subect to "no victim or threat) and consistent with Human Rights law. It must not become a medicinal cannabis usesr event only.

Paul Flynn MP wants people to smoke cannabis in Parliament

What Mr Flynn has failed to recognise is that cannabis "disobedience" events such as Smokey Bears Picnics have been happening in the UK since the 1960's and achieved nothing.

Also if people are arrested and fined is he going to help pay the fines? I ask as he is in law inciting the action.

And how often should people protest in that way - to make it effective people may have to defy bans and risk prison.

YET I do congratulate Paul Flynn for his efforts.

I hope that one day Human Rights and equal law for all will come in to the capaign - Right to a Private Life (which includes growing and possessing plants provided there is no risk or harm to others), Right to one's own chosen BELIEF and PRACTICE (alone or with others) of those beliefs - as demanded in Human Rights law.

Although more people may have more sympathy for those that are ill and use cannabis to their benefit than those that are not maybe so ill, the fact is that the law fails to distinguish as it should not distinguish between WHY people use (although judges may be more lenient with the ill or injured) - it should distinguish purely on the issue of what harm done to who?

Also cannabis is extremely valuable as A PREVENTATIVE MEDICINE and in that sense all use is therapeutic.

NO Victim NO CRIME

THE PROHIBITION OF CANNABIS CULTIVATION AND POSSESSION IS A CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY
'SMOKE WEED IN PARLY' Labour MP says protesters should smoke cannabis in Parliament to shock officials into making it legal

Labour MP urges people to smoke cannabis at Parliament (Paul Flynn)

 UK will NOT legalize cannabis, government declares - despite surge in medical marijuana laws across the world 

 Tory ministers branded 'cowards' on drugs policy

Sunday, 18 June 2017

POLITICAL PRESSURE TOWARDS LEGALISATION

Labour would do well to adopt a policy of PR as well as calling for the end to prosecutions for personal use or growing. In Norwich 1997, Howard Marks gained about 620 votes and LCA in 2001 about the same when I stood, about 1.5%. In wards LCA gained up to 5%, even more elsewhere. The LCA had been founded, as you know, to bring the debate into the arena and give campaigners a voice, to influence the other party policies. As you know the last LCA candidate was in 2006. In 2005 general election the LCA vote had gone down to half that, about 0.8%. Politics had become more complicated by issues that people gave more priority to, such as ID and Iraq. Since then there were less than successful attempts at standing under the banner of CISTA.
Also give the estimated 4 million tokers, the million or so that have been criminalised or persecuted, the families, IF only that were a true political force.
To put pressure on the parties we should be telling them that IF they want our support and voted then they MUST stand for Justice and Rights in all issues and pledge to legalise, and see how far they go. The Green Party and Lib Dems both changed policies as result or political pressure, not because they had already recognised even some of the real issues that cannabis and hemp are connected to.
BUT what I saw on FB running up to the election was numerous people more or less saying they would vote Labour / Corbyn, to get rid of Tory / May, irrespective of the fact that Labour are pro-prohibition.
Don't get me wrong, they should have voted Labour if that is how they felt (as did I, after consulting the candidate to find our his views and getting a positive reply. Nobody know how any of us actually vote - but POLITICAL PRESSURE is before the election -
so to further to cause of ending cannabis prohibition, and all other issues we choose to fight for or against, do you agree that we should try to focus again on building an effective political force, with or without a new or existing party
I believe that if Labour had called for legalisation and put it in their manifesto, they would have won more seats, including Norwich North where the candidate Dr Chris Jones told me he supported legalisation but as far as I know did not say so in public or on his election literature.
 http://www.ccguide.org/lca/election_results.php 

Communication with Dr Chris Jones, Labour Party Candidate for Norwich North, 2017

Sent May 22 2017 
FAO Dr Chris Jones, Norwich North candidate: 
I would like to know your PERSONAL position on the issue of cannabis and the law and would you support a bill to legalise it if given a free vote. Alun Buffry
====
reply May 24 2017
REPLY from my Labour party candidate, Norwich North:
"Dear Alun.
""Thanks for getting in touch.
Personally I support legalisation - as a doctor and a psychiatrist I would advise everyone not to use drugs because I have seen the damage that they can do. Much of the cannabis that is widely available these days, is far stronger than it was many years ago and has a greater potential for causing psychiatric damage. However, I strongly believe that criminalisation does more harm than good and that a properly regulated legal market similar to that as is currently used in The Netherlands, would be far better than the current situation.
"Kind regards
Chris Jones."
====
sent June 11 2017

Dear Dr Chris Jones,
Sorry to see that you lost by so few votes. Your stance on cannabis law won you mine.
I sincerely believe that given the estimated number of people that consume cannabis and / or would like to see prohibition repealed, based on the national estimates, at least 5000 of them in Norwich North , I think it was a shame that you did not broadcast your personal views on cannabis further, as I believe you may well have won those extra 502 + votes.
Howard Marks won over 600 votes on the single issue in each of Norwich North and Norwich South constituencies in 1997 and I won over 600 votes in Norwich South on the single issue in 2001. In the local council elections, cannabis candidates won from 2 to 5% of the vote.
You can see the cannabis party election results here: http://www.ccguide.org/lca/election_results.php
I hope that should there be another election soon, or not, that you wil make some sort of public statement in favour or repeal of prohibition and an end to the punishment of victimles consumers and growers.
I further hope that this can be brought to the attention of Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party committees.
I know personally some people who gave their votes to the Greens or Lib Dems and others who just did not vote at all, especially in constituenccies where the Labour candidate did not publicly support the end of cannabis prohibition.
Alun Buffry
======
reply: Hi Alun.
Thank you for your kind words and for putting your trust in me - it genuinely means a lot. To lose by such a small margin is incredibly frustrating, but we can be proud of significantly reducing Chloe Smith's majority, particularly considering that UKIP stood aside to give her a free run. There's every chance that there'll be another election soon, which I think will end in our favour.
It's been a very busy period and I'm not sure where the Labour Party are in regards to such proposals, I expect such changes will only be possible if a good majority is achieved at the next election - whenever that may be!
Thanks again for getting in touch.
Kind regards
Chris Jones.
==== 
sent June 17 2017 
You missed the point Chris Jones - the point is to put pressure on the Labour Party NOW so that they change their ridiculous nonsensical and unjustice policy of supporting cannabis prohibition and the punishments and hardships that go with it, to get Labour to include legalisation in their next manifesto (that is the promise to legalise) and in that way win votes and the next election. The time to strat that is now.
I KNOW the Labour party position on this, how come that you are "not sure"? I hoped that you knew the party position. Jeremy Corbyn has said that he supports cannabis as a medicine. Well who but an ignoranus would not? But that shows that JC has not adequately studies the issues: for starters over on emillion UK citizens have been criminalised, have criminal records and along with those convictions, limitations o travel, employment, insurance and medicines, despite having committed no other crimes, whilst continuing to allow massive pharamaceutical businesses to make huge profits selling often ineffective and mostly dangerous drugs and on the other hands criminals are out of the street selling the very same drugs and cannabis that concern us all. Alun Buffry

Friday, 19 May 2017

Cannabis law question for Jeremy Corbyn MP, Labour Leader

I left this question on Jeremy Corbyn's FB page and hope that you will ask something similar and help raise the profile in his mind _ my comment is awaiting approval:

"If elected will you stop the arrest and prosecution of people for possession or cultivation of cannabis for their own use unless it can be proved that they have posed a risk to public health, public order, national security or the Rights of others, as demanded by Human Rights to a Private Life and to hold and practice one's choice of belief? This would be based upon the concept that if there is no victim then there cannot be a crime."
https://www.facebook.com/JeremyCorbynMP/

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Lib Dems promise to control your choice of cannabis

I sent this to the Lib Dems via their web site but as yet have not received a reply, only an acknowledgent saying they are very busy:


“so your argument goes like this: skunk is made and sold by gangsters and a small number of people may have experiences bad effects on their mental health and so you want to legalise weaker strains and stop every adult getting it, even those that experience tremendous medical benefits?


“firstly, once again I am disappointed that you fail to understand and support the Human Rights to a Private Life and the freedom of choice and practice of one's own beliefs and prefer to force your own beliefs about "skunk" on everyone.


“this is just another form of prohibition.


“secondly, you seem to misunderstand that certain strains of high THC low CBN cannabis plants are grown and sold illegally simply because many people prefer them - as is evident in Dutch coffeeshops and Barcelona Cannabis Clubs where there is plenty of choice including different ratios.

“in fact, "skunk" seems to have become a word applied to cannabis plants with high THC and the original "skunk" is no longer available on the streets of the UK.


“your logic, if applied to alcohol, would suggest you may support a ban on alcoholic spirits above a certain strength because some people that drink them have problems?


“ if you "legalise" cannabis in this way you will ensure that those that want the high THC low-CBD varieties will either grow their own or buy from illegally grown crops and leave a massive opening for the "gangs" you want to avoid. After all, those people risk up to 14 years in prison under the present regime - what sort of punishment threat would you replace that with and how will it be policed?


“what a shame that after all these years the Lib Dems still miss the point - but watching how cannabis campaigners are reacting it seems that you will not be gaining so many votes.”

Lib Dems promise to legalise cannabis for everyone over 18

A regulated cannabis market for the UK


Thursday, 20 April 2017

ASK THE CANDIDATES ABOUT CANNABIS LAW

Political parties do not necessarily insist that their candidates agree with every policy and the legal status of cannabis possession, cultivation and supply is one of those policies: hence Peter Lilley, Conservative, supports legalisation as does Paul Flynn, Labour, and others, despite the prohibition stance of their Parties. Likewise I have spoken to Lib Dems and Green Party candidates in the past who were against legalisation.

That said, many MP's and candidates will say they support "legalisation for medical use" without really explaining what they mean, being seemingly happy to see other victimless users and growers face fine, prison and criminal records.

Some, the dumbest of all, even continue to deny that cannabis itself has any medicinal value: that is how our governments have classified the plant in the Misuse of Drugs Act and theycontinue to deny medical benefits even despite Sativex THC and CBD products are now classified as having medicinal uses and all the evidence, anedotal or not, to the contrary!

THAT IS WHY it is essential for everyone to ask (write, telephone, attend Hustings, emai, whatever) for their personal view and how they would vote (Whip or not) on a bill to fully legalise cannabis possession, cultivation and supply.

OTHERWISE, personally, I could not possibly vote for any candidate either dumb enough or stubborn enough, who stands against legalisation and / or ignores the punishment of victimless consumers.

That is WHY I am ASKING YOU to ASK THE CANDIDATES.

PLEASE SHARE

Monday, 20 February 2017

False Claim Rebuked:: Dagga legalisation ‘could lead to long-term abuse’

Your headline reads "Dagga legalisation ‘could lead to long-term abuse’ and you list possible bad effects from consuming cannabis.

The word "misuse" means to use for a purpose other than for which it is intended.

I put it to you that most if not all people that consume cannabis do so with the intention that it makes them feel better - that is an intended use, irrespective of law.  It also includes a high number of people that use it with the intention of it easing pain, spasms, insomnia, loss of appetite and many of things; and they report, in very many cases, psoitively.

Like most beneficial and medicinal substances, those that find relief and especially those that have not found it in pharmaceutical drugs, continue to use it for that very reason:

their use does not become abuse, just like for people who use pharmaceutical products may continue to do so, often for the rest of their lives, because they are prescribed and because they want to feel better - whether or not the drugs work - do not change from "users" to "abusers."

If dagga becomes legal to grow, possess or even buy and sell, it must be remembered that the law is about people, not drugs.   If the law is meant to protect people then cannabis consuers deserve the same level of protection as people get when they buy other commodities (quality, cleanliness, packaging, safety) and that is only possible if the activities are within the law.

Is the law meant to protect us or simply try to control our choices?  Should it punish people who make the wrong choices, even if they do no harm?

Of, course on the other hand, if the law is meant to try to deter people from growing or uisng cannabis and force them to depend on pharmaceutical drugs, risk exposing them to criminal drug suppliers, limit their social consumption to alcohol, and keep criminal profits beyoind the reach of the taxman, then keep the law as it is.


Dagga legalisation ‘could lead to long-term abuse’

Research has shown that use among teens younger than 18 impacts higher brain function.

This will make the country the first in Africa to downgrade cannabis from a Schedule 7 banned substance to a Schedule 6 prescription drug, Springs Advertiser reports.
Dr Shaquir Salduker, board member of the Psychiatry Management Group says he believes the proposed legislation requires review and thorough research, which to date has not been done.
“Easing the laws to allow medical research and discovery is a good idea, but releasing it for general consumption opens the door to possible abuse,” he says.
He adds that a report released in 2013 by the SA Community Epidemiology Network on Drug Use suggests that one in 10 people in SA have an addiction problem involving cannabis and alcohol, the most commonly abused drugs.
“Although there are some studies indicating cannabis is as effective as existing painkillers and does have some effect on nausea, appetite stimulation, anxiety and seizures, there are to date no landmark studies into its role in pain management that would make it a revolutionary agent in pain control.
“The trends in the countries that have legalised (cannabis) have led to fraudulent prescriptions and ultimately become an epidemic of abuse, especially among those younger than 18.”
Salduker points out that there are potentially many benefits that will arise from cannabis research, but there has to be a clear message put out that it’s not the same as the substance that is being smoked, eaten, vaporised or brewed in teas.
“The danger is that if it’s being used medicinally, we have no idea of what dose is being administered and what the potential side-effects are.”
Changes can occur in:
• blood pressure,
• pulse rate,
• paranoia,
• extreme anxiety, and
• panic attacks, to name but a few.
“There seems to be a belief that if the oil is used, it’s medicinal as compared to smoking the weed.
“We also don’t know much about its interactions with chronic medications, so until it hasn’t been properly researched, sub-types isolated, cleaned up and safety assured, it cannot be handed out willy-nilly and promoted as a ‘naturalistic or homeopathic’ treatment,” Salduker says.
He adds that excessive use of cannabis has dire consequences not only in terms of developing schizophrenia-like illnesses, which may require lifelong treatment of the disorder, but can also lead to the deterioration of existing mental disorders.
“Cannabis can provoke relapses in bipolar disorder and can cause chronic amotivational syndrome in long-term users.
“Research has shown that use among teens younger than 18 impacts higher brain function called cognition, which is essentially learning, memory, concentration and intellectual development, as well as motivation.
“I fear that if the misperception gets entrenched, we are going to possibly have an entire generation of ‘brain damaged’ adults before the penny drops.”
Salduker says cannabis is a common form of self-medication, like alcohol and codeine.
Due to its temporary effect on anxiety and sense of mood elevation, it can become quite habit-forming for patients suffering from mental illnesses.
“The historic pattern has been that youngsters start with alcohol and then cannabis and as time goes on they lose the meaning of ‘banned substance’ or ‘illegal’ and start to see all drugs as ‘having some good’, which can lead them to harder and life-destructive drugs,” Salduker concludes.
A Springs Advertiser reader had this to say: “All of a sudden so many young people are going to be ‘sick’.”
– Caxton News Service