The Patch

January 23, 2007

Tuesday 23rd January 2007.

Filed under: UK News — Claire @ 12:06 am

Well, Patchers (better nickname pending, I promise), this week, I’m a bit stuck for what to write. I’m not sure I’m cut out for this…plenty of things have happened, just none I’m really bothered enough about to have a half meaningful ramble about it.

I started to write a piece on the Jade Goody fiasco, since it’s been at the forefront of the news here for about a week now…but then I realised several of my lovely colleagues have already mentioned this in some shape or form, and that the whole “OMG, racist bitch!” debate has been going on for far too long now. It’s just not interesting anymore. She’s in all the papers saying she’s “nasty and ugly” (no shit, Sherlock), and is now apparently suicidal because of what‘s happened. Bonus.

I was also contemplating writing about Scotland’s renewed call for independence on the 300th anniversary of Scotland and England’s union, on the suggestion of a friend who feels quite strongly that Scotland should stay part of the UK. I decided against this for fear that our Politics correspondent Alan would have me strung up.

What else could I talk about? The Weather? How very British. I’m thinking that an article on the numerous elderly women who have been carried on a spontaneous flight through the town centre during last week’s gales wouldn’t be the most interesting thing. But who can say my pieces ever are?

And then I hit on it. Not the most thrilling of topics, but it’ll do.

So, the law is changing so that kids will no longer be arrested for smoking cannabis. What is such a lax attitude to drug-taking, albeit of a mild drug, going to achieve? Why is it suddenly OK to allow a child to smoke something I was told to avoid like the plague when I was little or I’d become a crack addict, yet not OK for a child to smoke tobacco?

There are several reasons for the proposed changes, I imagine. First reason being that the declassification of cannabis to Class C back in 2004 means adults are no longer arrested for possession, and unlikely to be arrested for use unless they also distribute it so, you know, logic dictates that kids should be treated the same. The second prominent reason I imagine the change is occurring is because it leaves our Police force free to catch the real bad guys rather than harmless stoners. But it’s still a narcotic, it still can cause schizophrenia, paranoia…should we really be wanting to subject kids to that?

I’m by no means making a judgement here, but it seems the priorities of the government for our youth are a little skewed. Should we just let kids get on with it? Make their own mistakes? Follow the trend even indulged in by a certain young member of our Royal Family not so long ago? They’re not the same as adults, they do what their peers do, they’d spark up a joint because people in their crowd do, and they don’t know what side-effects pot might have. I suppose that’s what Frank is for, mind (primary purpose, anyway, it’s secondary aim appears to be scaring the living shit out of me).

David Cameron, the 343rd Conservative leader in the last 5 years, who was allegedly a pothead himself back in the day and is therefore totally unbiased on the issue, reckons that if we let the Tories back in power, he’ll make cannabis legal. Which is nice of him. He’ll only be doing it for the votes, though. It’s a shame that cannabis use is being trivialised in such a way, because it’s all very well and good to say you’ll legalise cannabis as part of your manifesto, but glossing over the fact that use of soft drugs can lead to use of hard drugs and just pretending that cannabis is all laughs and japes to secure a few voters is just a tiny bit reckless.

Personally, I don’t know what to think. Yes, cannabis seems harmless, people have smoked it in front of me and, as yet, none have ended up in a spiral of drug abuse ending in their terrible terrible demise. Yes, arresting kids isn’t really going to stop them. But it’s still a drug…not a hardcore one, but it’s getting to be that cannabis is on a par with alcohol and cigarettes and just letting kids get on with doping themselves up, providing no resistance at all, isn’t, to me anyway, very responsible.



  1. preach it sistah!

    Comment by Amie — January 23, 2007 @ 12:34 am | Reply

  2. I would be fine with differing thoughts on the Union, incidentally.

    Comment by freshlysqueezedcynic — January 23, 2007 @ 4:38 pm | Reply

  3. Excellent, may have a crack at it next week then, mate, I just didn’t want to do any toe stepping!

    Comment by Claire — January 23, 2007 @ 5:47 pm | Reply

  4. i mis read that comment and thought it said “may have crack next week then”

    Comment by andy — January 24, 2007 @ 1:08 am | Reply

  5. Frank scares the shit out of me too. Especially their online adverts. Gah.

    Weed is the drug for losers, something relatively ‘safe’, cheap and easy to get hold of that high school kids can try out a few times with their other immensely cool buddies. Like I said on the M to the S to the N, I don’t see the appeal beyond this. Grown men who smoke it are just saaaaaaaaaaad.

    Comment by Marton — January 24, 2007 @ 1:21 pm | Reply

  6. I’m fairly sure the only way Frank works is because if you see one of their adverts whilst high on anything it will mentally destroy you to the extent you are incapable of speaking again, never mind smoking weed.

    Comment by Phil — January 26, 2007 @ 2:00 am | Reply

  7. There’s a guy I work with who’s, as they a say, a total stoner… and it’s ‘this’ close to losing his job for him. His memory is almost none existant… which of course when you’re a junior member of staff who’s only way of making your way ‘up the ladder’ so to speak, is by impressively requesting missing information and logging changes on the client database… your memory is kind of important. Not to mention his rather bad sweat problem… and increasing appetite… it’s not looking overly good.

    To be honest it pissed me off when they reclassified it… but now that they’re making it MORE legal than smoking cigarettes… it’s kind of getting beyond a joke. Especially if the proposed change of the legal age you’re allowed to smoke happens. It’s ridiculous…

    I could have said that in a much more concise form… but never mind. Hehe good article 🙂

    Comment by Emma — January 27, 2007 @ 12:09 pm | Reply

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