Would the legalisation of cannibis help reduce the drug problem in Derry (and elsewhere)?

Right, I have no personal interest in pushing this line (‘if you’ll forgive the pun’). In other words I don’t do illegal drugs. That may be a result of the happy accident of never having really smoked and on the few occasions I’ve been offered canibis (a long long long time ago), it made only me splutter…

A second deterrent was the connection it implies to a vast underworld that survives and gets by in an unregulated and brutal criminal world. Yesterday’s news from Mexico was a pretty shocking insight as to just how brutal…

Closer to home we’ve had the usual to and fro on the morality of a summary justice that seems to be popular in some Northern Irish communities, not least in Derry… Inhabitants of those communities afflicted by the outworkings of an illegal drugs trade live in state of misery.

So what if cannibis were to be made legal? Sounds farfetched perhaps. But in the case of cannibis, it would not take much change from the Health Minister to deliver it

If Policing seems to be failing (for a basket of reasons, most of which are political and therefore beyond the police’s capacity can do something about it) perhaps there are other areas of policy that might be used to open up another front on what will whilst it remains criminal be a difficult issue to tackle?

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty

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