By Steve Elliott of Toke of the Town
Germany's socialist Left party is calling an expert hearing on "legalizing cannabis through the introduction of cannabis clubs" in the German Parliament on Wednesday, January 25, but the idea has reportedly been met with "widespread rejection" from mainstream politicians.
The Left party is proposing that Germans be allowed to open cannabis clubs where members can grow marijuana, reports PanArmenian.net. They also recommend that consumers be allowed to possess up to 30 grams of pot for personal use, double the current limit in Germany.
The proposal was written by Frank Tempel, former director of an anti-drug group that worked with police in the eastern German state of Thuringia, reports The Local. Tempel, who is now the Left party's advisor on drug policy, said there needs to be a sea change in Germany's attitude to marijuana.
?"A cannabis ban is the legal model that has the least acceptance," Tempel said.
He estimated that between 3.5 and 4 million Germans use cannabis, and that the government's official ban on the substance has no influence on their decision.
According to the German Cannabis Association (DHV), there are about 100,000 cannabis-related criminal cases in the country each year.
Tempel said marijuana prohibition actually encourages drug abuse, because it curtails public education. He said Germany should prioritize prevention, youth protection and controlling the drug market over criminalization, and that young people should no the allowed in the proposed cannabis clubs.
The Left party proposal also suggests that local health ministries could cooperate with the clubs.
Article From Toke of the Town and republished with special permission.