Another European Country Is Legalising Cannabis

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The legalisation of cannabis is a big ethical debate these days, and you can make the case that both arguments have valid points on whether it should or shouldn’t be legal to smoke.

For the record, I’m in the ‘for’ legalising camp, but then again who cares what I think – I’m just a left wing, socially liberal, piece of shit.

Recently though, there’s been an increase in countries seeing cannabis for it’s health benefits, with Greece now becoming the latest EU state to legalise it’s use for medical purposes.

Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras said last week that doctors will soon be able to prescribe the drug for a variety of medical conditions, which could include muscle spasms, Crohn’s, anxiety, depression, ME, chronic pain, PTSD, epilepsy, and cancer.

“From now on, the country is turning its page, as Greece is now included in countries where the delivery of medical cannabis to patients in need is legal,” Mr Tsipras said at a press conference, as reported by the Greek Government Gazette.

This makes Greece the sixth European country to take action, with the Czech Republic, Finland, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain all legalising the drug for medical consumption.

The Prime Minister also announced that ‘da herb’ would be downgraded from a Table A drug (equivalent to class A in the UK) to a Table B drug, which also includes drugs like methadone and opium, so that’s pretty dope (I’ll leave now).

The legalisation of medical cannabis in Greece is expected to boost the economy too (which is surprising because you’d think everyone would just be sat around eating crisps and watching Dude, Where’s My Car?) by creating a new legal drug market.

In Canada, for example, Deloitte estimated that legalising cannabis would create $23 billion per year, more than the combined sales of beer, wine and spirits.

A statement released by the Canadian government on the decriminalisation of cannabis said:

“The current approach to cannabis does not work. It has allowed criminals and organized crime to profit, while failing to keep cannabis out of the hands of Canadian youth. In many cases, it is easier for our kids to buy cannabis than cigarettes.”

“The proposed Cannabis Act would create a strict legal framework for controlling the production, distribution, sale and possession of cannabis in Canada.”

I wouldn’t expect it to happen over here anytime soon though – it’s still an illegal class B drug in the UK that can lead to 5 years in prison, or an unlimited fine if you are caught in possession of it.

In Greece’s case, the news is a pretty positive move forward considering the country’s traditionally restrictive laws on its use. It remains to be seen if it becomes only the second European country (the other being Portugal) to legalise recreational cannabis too, but we can only hope.

If they do I’d expect to see a very obvious spike in holidaymakers flocking to the country for their summer hols.

Do you think medical cannabis should be legalised in the UK? Let us know in the comments below!

Images via iStock/GIPHY

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