Legalise Cannabis Cork, the Cork-chapter of national cannabis advocacy organization Legalise Cannabis Ireland (LCI), is to hold a march for cannabis in Bishop Lucey Park Sat. May 7th at 2:00pm; further details are available online, and through the Cork chapter's Facebook page (www.facebook.com/lcicork).
This will be the fifth year that the nascent political party has been organizing the marches, which aim to challenge peoples' conceptions about marijuana, and confront an increasingly untenable drugs policy which has proved incapable of suppressing personal marijuana use, or embracing the plant's medical use.
The party, which has recently received the support of Independent TDs Luke 'Ming' Flanagan and Mick Wallace, set its Cork protest to coincide with this year's Worldwide Marijuana March (WWMM) (see: http://cannabis.wikia.com/wiki/Global_Marijuana_March_2011), to which over 600 cities have signed up, with over 300 protesting at last year's event, 500 the year before and this year is expected to be the biggest yet. The global movement aims to bring cities and populations together in a united annual stand against governments' generally hostile stance towards cannabis.
Legalise Cannabis Ireland says that a number of promising developments have bolstered hopes that drugs policy reform may finally be on the way for Ireland -- if only in legalising the plant as a medical aid -- most notably an instruction from the Department of Justice to the Department of Health to enact an EU agreement allowing patients the uninhibited right to carry psychotropic drugs, including cannabis, once medically prescribed. This breakthrough move comes on the back of recent EU overtures that states should not inhibit or enact legislation allowing cannabis for medical purposes. The carrying of medical cannabis was legalized in the UK last year and its medical use is currently legal in many US states, including, perhaps most prominently, California. A meeting last year between (then) Tánaiste Mary Harney and reform advocate-cum-solicitor Gordon McArdle set in train a process which culminated in the drafting of a bill to legalise medical cannabis -- the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Act, which although not enacted, proved to be a powerful incentive for further drugs-policy lobbying.
A member from LCI Cork, said:
"The upcoming protest is our third such protest in Cork. The march is part of Legalise Cannabis Ireland's strategy to address cannabis policy reform and to further our aim of ending the prohibition of cannabis in all its forms and guises."
"A number of recent developments, particularly those emanating from the EU, have increased our hopes that legalising medical cannabis is not only probable, but in fact inevitable and we eagerly await the passage of this important legislation through the Dáil."
"Our view is that prohibition has failed in its main objectives to reduce harm and supply to society."
"I would also like to suggest that we consider the likelihood of industrial hemps potential for our future. Despite being able to create over 25,000 eco products including fuel and paper none of the political parties have any plans for industrial hemp. Industrial hemps potential far outweighs that of any commodity which we produce currently as it could provide green stimulus to all sectors including consumption. If we don't do this others will so lets not lose sight of this opportunity to create green jobs, revenue and growth with industrial hemp and continue on our goal of exporting innovative products around the world with Irish graduates NOT emigrating abroad to meet this new hemp economy."
"Legalise Cannabis Ireland Cork is calling on the public to show their support for this cause by attending the march."