Category Archives: Opinion

Dagga: The next major civil rights movement.

Fromer IFP (Inkatha Freedom Party) MP, Dr. Mario Oriani-Ambrosini, who succumbed to stage-four lung cancer pleaded with parliament and president Zuma to look into the legalization of dagga (marijuana, cannabis) for medical use. He started off by saying “People are dying of bad policies and bad laws, we can change.” He then went further to say that it would be a crime against humanity to continue the prohibition of dagga . The human rights question of medical marijuana can be extended to the use of dagga in religious practices, as it too would be a crime against humanity to prohibit followers of a religion to practice that religion.

Current and historic legal stance
In 1908 the first laws governing the use of dagga in South Africa were imposed and the trading in dagga was banned. In 1923 South Africa wrote to the Council of the League of Nations reminding them that they should include Indian hemp (dagga) on their list of opium and other dangerous drugs and in 1925 dagga was prohibited worldwide. In 1971 the Abuse of Dependence-producing Substances and Rehabilitation Centres Act 41 of 1971 was introduced and amended in 1992 to the current legislation . Under South African law dagga is an undesirable dependence-producing substance and a schedule 2 substance, same as heroine and tik. It is prohibited by the Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act 140 of 1992 (hereinafter referred to as “the Drugs Act”) and caries heavy penalties. In 1996 section 21(10)(a)(i) of the Drugs Act was constitutionally challenged.

Constitutional developments
The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996 guarantees freedom of religion and the right to culture , and in the case of Prince v President of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope formed the foundation of the argument put to the Constitutional Court. The appellant, Mr. Garreth Prince, a dedicated Rastafarian wanted to become an attorney. After disclosing his former criminal convictions for the possession of dagga, under the Drugs Act and his intent to continue using the plant to the law society, they declined to register him as an attorney. He approached the courts. First the High court and then the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissed his constitutional challenge. The Constitutional Court was approached.

The court looked at Rastafarianism, dagga and Rastafarianism, the medical benefits of dagga and the relevant law. The onus never rested on the court to make a decision regarding the legality of dagga but rather if the laws governing dagga was inconsistent with the constitution regarding Rastafarians . After evaluating sections 15 and 31 of the Constitution the court found that there was an infringement on Prince’s right to freedom of religion. Both the minister of health and the attorney general conceded that the infringement took place . They in turn argued that the infringement was justified under section 36 of the Constitution . The onus now rested on the court to determine if the infringement was reasonable and justified. After carefully evaluating all the facts the court ruled that in order to protect the general population a provision for Rastafarians would not be made and that the limitation of rights were justified and reasonable. In the Prince case one of the justifications to the limitation to the freedom of religion for the prohibition of dagga was to uphold international law. Van der Schyff warns and reminds us that it is important to uphold international law but that the Constitution is always superior to those laws . In S v Bhulwana and S v Gwadiso the court held that the presumption of guilt in trade of dagga if caught with 115g of dagga or more was inconsistent with s 33 (1) of the Interim Constitution of 1993, presumption of innocence until proven guilty.

Recent local and foreign developments
In recent years a lot of groundbreaking scientific research has been conducted on the medical benefits and risks associated with dagga. Many countries have legalized the use of dagga for medical purposes, 22 US states and the district of Colombia , most of Europe, Israel and most of South America. Dr. Mario Oriani-Ambrosini introduced our own Medical Innovation Bill to parliament after his plea, which was later published in the government gazette . The purpose of the bill is to make provisions for medical innovation concerning dagga and to legalize the use of the plant for medical, commercial and industrial use.

Other countries legalized or decriminalized the use of dagga for recreational use. In 2013 Uruguay and the US states of Washington and Colorado legalized marijuana for personal use. Portugal decriminalized the use of all drugs more than a decade ago and the results have been greater than expected. The crime rate and the use of drugs amongst the youth dropped dramatically.

Another constitutional challenge is however underway. Julian Stobbs and his life partner Myrtle Clark, collectively known as the Dagga Couple, are challenging the government of South Africa to legalize the use, possession and dealing of dagga . The basis for their argument is that the laws governing dagga is outdated and originates from racist colonial laws. They also argue that the laws have no scientific merit . In their video, Dagga: The truth , they explored the origin and early use of dagga in South Africa, not only the use amongst the indigenous population but also the use of dagga among the Voortrekkers and early Afrikaans community as a home remedy. It soon becomes clear from the video that the use of dagga amongst the slaves in the sugarcane plantations did not suite the early colonials. As they believed it slowed down the workforce, made them lazy and insane. They also bring up an important point, that if the sale and trade in the more dangerous substances, tobacco and alcohol, is regulated by law then so too can the sale and trade in dagga. Dagga has to date not been the cause of a single death worldwide, while the annual death toll attributed to tobacco in South Africa in 2010 was 44 000 . Almost half of all motor vehicle accidents are attributed to alcohol . Their case will be heard in the Constitutional Court in March 2015.

Conclusion
To express my feelings towards the subject I leave you with some wise words from former US President Jimmy Carter:

“Penalties against possession of a drug should not be more damaging to an individual than the use of the drug itself; and where they are, they should be changed. Nowhere is this more clear than in the laws against possession of marijuana ”

Written by Theodore Krouse, 2014/10/15

References:
1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m0W-Q_OHbYk
2: Abuse of Dependence-producing Substances and Rehabilitation Centres Act 41 of 1971
3: https://www.daggacouple.co.za/dagga-the-truth/
4: Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act 140 of 1992
5: The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996
6: s 15 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996.
7: s 31 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996
8: Prince v President of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope (CCT36/00) [2002] ZACC 1; 2002 (2) SA 794; 2002 (3) BCLR 231 (25 January 2002)
9: Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act 140 of 1992
10: Prince v President of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope (CCT36/00) [2002] ZACC 1; 2002 (2) SA 794; 2002 (3) BCLR 231 (25 January 2002) at 1
11: Prince v President of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope at 15-24
12: Prince v President of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope at 109
13: s 15 s31 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996
14: Prince v President of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope at 28
15: s 36 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996
16: Prince v President of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope
17: The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996
18: Van der Schyff 2003 Tydskrif vir die Suid-Afrikaanse reg133
19: Burchell Principles of criminal law 125
20: http://medicalmarijuana.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=000881
21: Staatskoerant 18 Februarie 2014
22: http://content.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1893946,00.html
23: http://www.iol.co.za/news/crime-courts/sa-s-ban-on-dagga-wrong-says-couple-1.1102379#.U2S3WvmSycw
24: https://www.daggacouple.co.za/about/
25: https://www.daggacouple.co.za/dagga-the-truth/
26: https://www.daggacouple.co.za/dagga-the-truth/
27: http://christiandrugsupport.wordpress.com/most-commonly-used-drugs/sa-statistics/
28: Perkel 2005 South African psychiatry review26

Public Statement Regarding Dagga Crop Spraying

To all South Africans:

We say we have banned drugs to protect the public even at the risk of exposing drug consumers to various herbicides and poisons not made known to the public.

We also disregard the latest medical findings and the fact that dagga laws were found on segregation and discrimination that was even further exploited by us when we were known as the apartheid regime.

Present day South Africa we tend to disregard the developments in the United States even though most of our dagga spray operations are encouraged and funded by the Unites States but more accurately the DEA. The same agency that is still enforcing dagga prohibition by defying 20 US states’ decision to legalize and regulate medical dagga.

We really care for you sheeple. Why do you think we have given you such amazing things like alcohol, tobacco, GM foods, shale gas exploration, etc?

Because we really love you so much that we risk killing a few people in the process of profiteering while attempting to clear the dagga problem.

We really care so much for you that we will put you in jail with hardened criminals just to make sure you never use, smoke or sell dagga ever again.

We do not care if you are doing it for your livelihood. We really do not care about what doctors, patients and scientists have to say about dagga.

Stop pestering us with requests for dagga reform! Why don’t you go to your nearest pub or tavern and have some release from the modern day struggles of life but please don’t drink and drive yourself home.

Yes we overlook parents morally accepting that their kids abuse alcohol because what we don’t know about we don’t care about.

Ha ha ha you got us. Yes before the ANC was unbanned way before 1994 the main financial income for the ANC came from the sale & distribution of dagga but we now have legitimate sources of funding so we really couldn’t care at the moment, we are however thinking of selling stock piles of rhino horn.

We are indirectly supporting organized crime by keeping dagga illegal and unregulated but there is too much as stake if we should regulate dagga.

We will not only lose out on profits from hunting down & housing dagga users, sellers and distributors but you have to think about the impact dagga bio oil could have on the oil industry not to mention the paper and cotton industries they are all at risk of major profits loss. We cannot have that happen even at the expense of in-humanely jailing people for a victimless crime.

Yes we do do not have evidence to present to you for what I am about to say but let me say to you we are responsible for any and all persons affected by poisons that reach dagga users because of desperate dagga growers pushing dagga that has been sprayed by the SAPS Air Wing Dagga Ops.

If you suspect that you have been a victim there is really nothing you can do about it. What we do is completely legal. Everything was done by the book.

We legally poison you.  You are not allowed to ingest any banned drugs a lot less toxic than herbicides in the first place.

You better do as we tell you sheeple!

Regards

Your government

** This letter is fictitious but could possibly be something that could be said if government spoke the truth about dagga.

Source: dagga.za.net/2013/07/21/sap-daggaop-poisoning-dagga-consumers/

Perception Of Dagga As A Safe Drug Is Scientifically Sound

It has been an excellent year for modern dagga research. Lots of the propaganda and disinformation pushed forward by government paid organizations have been debunked and the latest research continues to debunk many myths people full heartedly believe to be true about dagga.

Propagandists gave us cancer causing carcinogens and we knocked them back by vaporizing. Then along came Dr William Courtney who cured brain cancer in a 9 month old baby with juiced dagga and also reminded us that the THC Acid in dagga does not become active until it has been converted from THC Acid to THC by heating or otherwise smoking dagga.

“Dagga is the world’s most important vegetable” – Dr. William Courtney

Early propagandists told us dagga is most dangerous and could be fatal. Later however the LD50 of dagga revealed that it is physically impossible to fatally overdose on dagga.

In a study done in 2007 by Professor David Nutt he charted the harms and dependence of various drugs including tobacco, alcohol and dagga. Dagga is the least harmful and least dependence producing substance of these three drugs yet alcohol and tobacco is legally available to adults.

In May of 2013 a study found that dagga may combat HIV and we learn of Marathon runner Henry Ngomezulu who cured his HIV with a dagga tea infusion.

In the same month another study revealed that habitual dagga use is not linked to cancer and more studies in the month of May 2013 found that dagga may combat depression, diabetes, brain damage and even reduce the risk of bladder cancer.

In the entire existence of man not a single person have died because of a dagga overdose.

The scientific evidence clearly indicates that dagga is indeed not only safe but is also a beneficial herb & supplement to aid humanity.

Prohibitionist’s Food for thought for; If you really believe dagga is dangerous why do you keep dagga in the wild where any person desperate enough sells without an age restriction?

 

Sources

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Nutt?

http://druglibrary.org/schaffer/library/mj_overdose.htm

http://dagga.za.net/2013/07/14/2013-an-excellent-year-for-dagga-research/

http://dagga.za.net/2013/09/26/dagga-tea-cured-me-of-hiv/

Give Children Medical Dagga

To decarb or not; that is the question and also rule of thumb when deciding to give medical dagga to children.

Get to know your Cannabinoids.

THCA is not active THC.

You can think of THCA as the raw plant. It does not give a high if you eat it as a salad or juice the leafs and buds.

It’s only when THCA is heated or burned that it’s converted to THC and becomes active.

I have made a non decarboxylated tincture before and I can tell you nobody will be running around goofed off their heads from THCA.

Vegetable glycerin tinctures are great substitute for alcohol based tinctures.

You need to combine at least a trinity of strains for a SUPER medicine, the more the merrier the saying goes.

If one understand the basics of cannabis, which should be mandatory part of education any person could potentially utilise high THCA content cannabis with high ratio CBDA (Which is the precursor of CBD like wise THCA is the precursor to THC) strains, without the psychoactive effects.

The basic rule of thumb would be to decide if you require active or non-active cannabinoids and then follow or ignore decarboxylation instructions in any recipe whether it’s tinctures or oil or edibles or alternatively you could combine 1:1 ratio of active to non active for a much broader spectrum of cannabinoids.

I would also like to point out, although I have not had personal experience with medical cannabis and patients, there are children with serious terminal life hindering diseases or conditions where the active cannabinoids make life altering improvements.

Also being high is not about being goofed off. At least it’s not my experience. It frees my mind from mental slavery. It’s a medicine for my mind, for the brain & for the soul.

Feeling high is not a confused state of mind but a period of intense clarity, happiness and bliss.

Also I do not condone dagga use by children but as other activist pointed out. Older kids rebel and they will be enticed by prohibition to try dagga or even drink alcohol and smoke tobacco.

While dagga is illegal children have easier access to dagga.

“Would you rather have you kids buy dagga from a stranger or give adults their right to choose dagga over alcohol and tobacco and buy from a responsible “dispensary” or Smart Shop where regulation controls and restrict the sale of dagga to minors like with alcohol.” – Buzz (William Wallace)

Being high is about being responsible.
Editor

The REAL Effects of Dagga

Introduction

For the last 25000 years man has been cultivating dagga, using it to clothe themselves, heal the sick, feed the hungry and alter the state of their consciousness.

Physiological effects of dagga on the human body.
Physiological effects of dagga on the human body.

The human body, the endo cannabinoid system & dagga

The human body is designed to include a complete cannabinoid system.
Cannabinoids that naturally occur inside the body are called Endo Cannabinoids.
We have cannabinoid receptors located in our brain, skin and organs. Receptors can almost be found in every part of the body.

How dagga is consumed is irrelevant as the end result is the same. The cannabinoids in dagga makes its way into your blood stream, couples with receptors found around the body and even manages to pass the blood brain barrier and couples to CB1 & CB2 receptors in the brain.

This coupling of receptors in the brain is what causes the euphoria or high experienced when consuming decarboxylated THC.

In order for the THC cannabinoid to couple with the receptors the dagga needs to be heated to convert the THC Acid into THC.

Only when dagga is smoked, baked or vaporized does it become active. It is impossible to get high from raw dagga.

Humans have been designed to consume dagga. Dagga is a vegetable and is the most important dietary essential on the planet.

The consumption of dagga is preventative proven by medical benefits.

Did you know? Durban Poison, the well known South African Sativa strain, is one of the favorite medical grade dagga strains in the United States where medical dagga is legal.

Dagga does not cause psychosis. People suffering from predisposed mental conditions are at risk of psychosis. However no clerical evidence exists to make this link.

My personal opinion is that dagga brings forth underlying mental conditions in people with predisposed mental conditions. Dagga is merely an indicator of an existing mental condition.

Did you know? Dagga counters snake venom! You need to be high at the time of bite for it to work. Proving prevention is better than cure.

 

Prohibition and the freedom of man

Almost all the negative associations of dagga are attributed to prohibition.

Under prohibition dagga is unregulated and open game for crime syndicates, gangs and even otherwise law abiding citizen to exploit for their own benefit.

There is no regulation to ensure quality of the product that makes it to the end-user.

There is no regulation to protect children and persons with predisposed mental conditions in the current illicit dagga industry.

South Africa is poverty stricken but the government corporation keeps throwing millions towards the fight on drug users and peddlers effectively making criminals from otherwise law abiding citizens for profit.

If a harsh jail sentence, admission of guilt fine and a criminal record was not already enough the corporate government also funds a special branch in the South African police Air Wing called DaggaOP that routinely spray dagga crops from helicopter with herbicides like glyphosphate with special tanks and spraying equipment sponsored by the United States’ Drug Enforcement Agency.

These corporate governments who fund these operation do not care that some of these contaminated dagga plants make its way to the dagga users of South Africa pushed on by desperate growers depending on this easy cash crop to support his family.


The law caters the gateway effect

While dagga is unregulated otherwise law abiding citizen using dagga are exposed to other hard drugs some of the syndicates or gangs might be offering thus the gateway effect is created directly by prohibition allowing criminal syndicates to be in control of dagga.

It’s worthy to keep in mind that the majority of dagga dealers are not part of syndicates or gangs. Most dagga dealers are otherwise law abiding citizens whose only means of income is from cultivating or selling dagga.

Industrial dagga freedom from the slave system

Dagga easily grows on its own essentially has zero cost for production value.

Dagga grows from seed to harvest within 8 to 12 weeks* (some strains may take longer to flower) and can be planted in the same soil for up to 20 years.

Dagga provides food, oil, alternative green carbon neutral bio-fuel, textile material, stronger building material, medication and much, much more. This wonder plant has over 50 000 uses!

 

What can South Africa achieve with legal dagga?

We could speculate at how 50 000 uses of a wonder plant could revolutionise South Africa but let’s take a realistic approach by looking at other countries that have a legalised dagga industry.

Denver, Colorado

Seven ways dagga legalisation has already benefited Colorado in only 8 months.

  1. According to Uniform Crime Reporting data for Denver, there has been a 10.1% decrease in overall crime from this time last year and a 5.2% drop in violent crime.

 

  1. The state has garnered over 10 million in taxes from retail sales in the first 4 months. The first 40 million of this tax revenue is earmarked for public schools and infrastructure, as well as for youth educational campaigns about substance use.

 

  1. There are renewed efforts to study the medical efficacy of dagga within the state, making Colorado an epicenter for dagga research.

 

  1. The dagga industry has developed quickly, generating thousands of new jobs. It is estimated there are currently about 10,000 people directly involved with this industry, with 1,000 to 2,000 gaining employment in the past few months alone.

 

  1. Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, who opposed Amendment 64, recently compared Colorado’s economy since legalization to that of other states by noting, “While the rest of the country’s economy is slowly picking back up, we’re thriving here in Colorado.” For example, the demand for commercial real estate has increased drastically, with houses in the state appreciating up to 8.7 percent in the past year alone.

 

  1. The voters of Colorado retain an overall positive view of the regulated dagga market, with 54% of Colorado voters still supporting dagga legalization and regulation, according to a recent Quinnipiac poll.

 

  1. By removing criminal penalties for certain dagga-related offenses, thousands of individuals will avoid the collateral consequences associated with a criminal record. The state is estimated to potentially save $12-40 million over the span of a year simply by ending arrests for dagga possession.

 

Conclusion

Ignorance has no place in law. The science is clear. Dagga is a safer choice to alcohol and tobacco. It is wrong to make criminals of otherwise law abiding citizens and to deny people their medicine.

Source