In 1994, the government-funded National Task Force on Cannabis reported that cannabis prohibition causes ‘significant social harm’. Despite the findings, the Australian government opted to ignore the recommendations – continuing to allow the public to be harmed through cannabis prohibition for the next 27+ years.
Since prohibition first entered the country back in 1926 when the ACT outlawed the plant, Australia has been waging its war on cannabis for nearly 100 years now. So let’s ask a few questions on the current state of illegal cannabis in Australia.
Is cannabis consumption at all time lows or at least on a steady decline?
Nope. Cannabis consumption is at all time highs.
Is there any cannabis black market siphoning billions of Australian dollars out of the country each year?
Yes. Vast criminal networks fund their empires using billions of Australian dollars from the cannabis black market.
How has Australia faired overall with cannabis prohibition?
Terribly. Cannabis prohibition in Australia has failed. On all counts.
Consumption of cannabis reached records levels in 2020 and international criminal organisations have chosen to create one of the largest networks of illicit cannabis farms in the world, right here in Australia.
Yet under instructions from the government, local police continue to spend billions of taxpayers money trying to revive a lost war, seizing various amounts of cannabis which have no impact on the criminal organisations or cannabis consumption.
Not only is it harming the general public and benefiting the criminal organisations, it’s also harming the millions of Australians who use cannabis.
A man in Queensland was recently found driving under the influence of cannabis and methamphetamines, despite him pleading he only ever smoked cannabis. This possibly indicates the sellers of the cannabis were artificially increasing the weight of the product using dangerous chemicals to increase their profits.
Toxic chemicals which increase the density and growth rates of cannabis during their life cycle have also plagued Australia for many years. Plant Growth Regulators (PGRs) are highly carcinogenic, but they massively boost profits. And if there’s one thing criminals almost certainly couldn’t care less about, it’s the long term health of their customers.
A legal and regulated cannabis industry would move the billion dollar black market into the hands of Australian regulators, and ensure the millions of Australians who use cannabis are consuming a safe product complying with stringent health standards. Sure, legal cannabis may be a little more expensive to begin with, but prices will come down as seen in Canada.
If you’re still unsure whether Australia and its citizens are better off with a legal and regulated cannabis market, here are seven reasons why they would be. Are you already behind legalising cannabis? Here are some things you can do to help bring about change in your country.