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Bundestag votes today on legalization of cannabis
The Bundestag today votes on a motion by the “Die Linke” parliamentary group The party calls for the "legalization of cannabis through the introduction of cannabis clubs". It is not expected that the request will meet with the consent of the other parties.
Association demands 30 grams of personal use
Some three million people in Germany have used cannabis in various forms in the past year, according to some studies. Cannabis experience is well over 14 million. "Members of the German Bundestag have the opportunity today to finally end the criminal prosecution of these citizens," warns Georg Wurth, managing director of the German Hemp Association (DHV). Legalizing 30 grams for personal use would put an end to the “disproportionate criminalization of cannabis users criticized by critics”. The introduction of so-called "cannabis social clubs" would enable adults to legally supply themselves with cannabis products without being exposed to the dangers of the black market, Wurth argues.
The left's application largely goes back to a petition from the German Hemp Association, which was signed by over 31,000 people. Citizens are significantly further ahead of this than their parliamentarians. According to an EMNID survey from summer 2010, the majority of Germans are in favor of a more liberal cannabis law. The majority of US citizens are in favor of full legalization of cannabis and were able to cast these views into law through referendums in Colorado and Washington at the end of 2012.
Advantage over alcohol "calm and relaxed"
During a hearing in the Bundestag, Dr. Raphael Gassmann of the German Center for Addiction Issues (DHS) believes that it is difficult to make a comparison between cannabis and alcohol. While alcohol is aggressive, cannabis users would become "calm and relaxed". "The black market prevents control, both in quantity and quality," said Dr. Nicole Krumdiek from the University of Bremen. The ban on cannabis would also promote the trade and consumption of synthetic herbal mixtures as a cannabis substitute. Prof. Dr. Rainer Thomasius from the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, however, indicated that "there is no doubt" that cannabis leads to a "physical and psychological addiction". According to the medical experts, consumption leads to physical addiction in around 10 percent of consumers.
In addition to the left, Alliance 90 / The Greens are also campaigning for a more liberal drug policy. The debate is scheduled for 8:55 p.m. this evening and will be broadcast live on the Internet. (Sb, pm)
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Image: Petra Bork / pixelio.de