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Nandor Tanczos Talks Pot To Press Club

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NORML New Zealand: Cannabis News Network
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National Organisation for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, New Zealand Inc.

MEDIA RELEASE – 24 AUGUST 2000 – FOR IMMEDIATE USE

Nandor Tanczos Talks Pot To Press Club

NORML Says Anti-Drug Zealots Should Acquaint Themselves With The Facts: "New Zealand’s Silent Majority Deserve Better"

The National Organisation for the Reform of Marijuana Laws New Zealand today congratulated Green MP Nandor Tanczos on his speech to the Press Club in Bellamy’s restaurant at Parliament, and called upon Prime Minister Helen Clark to listen to what the public wants and make cannabis law reform a matter of priority.

NORML’s spokesperson Chris Fowlie said: "Nandor has yet again spoken the truth about cannabis and we would love to see the small but vocal group of anti-drug zealots start to do the same. They should acquaint themselves with the facts, or shut up.

"The hysterical "reefer madness" claims currently being made about cannabis have been thoroughly debunked by every major inquiry into cannabis, including our own Health select committee’s 1998 inquiry into the mental health effects of cannabis. Yet prohibitionists are still claiming cannabis causes violence and insanity, that it is ’50 times’ as strong as in the sixties, that it causes a lack of motivation and that its use leads to hard drugs.

"It is saddening to see that these myths are still being peddled to try and scare New Zealanders into accepting the current failed policy. The silent majority who support cannabis law reform deserve better. A URM-Insight poll conducted for the Dominion this week showed 60% of New Zealanders support cannabis law reform, yet the Prime Minister has said that it is not a priority for her.

"We ask her, on behalf of the majority of the public who back cannabis law reform, how many people will need to be arrested before it becomes a priority? How many school children must be expelled before it becomes a priority? How much more money must be spend on this unenforceable and counterproductive law before we try another option?

"With even extreme prohibitionists like Trevor Grice and Tom Scott saying that what adults do in their own home is their own business, we have reached a broad consensus that cannabis use by adults should not be a crime. The issue of concern to all, including NORML, is uncontrolled use by young people.

"All the available evidence shows the current law is has lead to an increase in use, we need to undertake a review of the law as a matter of priority.

"Helen Clark should take charge to initiate the long-overdue inquiry into the legal status of cannabis. This inquiry needs to focus on consulting the public on what outcomes they want, and then evaluate potential policy options against these desired outcomes.

NORML asks, what does the National Party and it’s poodle the School Trustees Association have against such an open and honest discussion of the evidence?

Could it be because every major inquiry into cannabis and the law that has been held around the world has come to the same conclusion; that the law is an ass, and cannabis should be decriminalised."

-- ENDS --

COMMENT: Chris Fowlie Ph 09 302-5255 or 025 297-6843

Copies of Nandor Tanczos’ speech to the Press Club today can be obtained from his press secretary Jonathan Hill on 04 470-6679 or 021 110-1133

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National Organisation for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, NZ Inc.

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