[GERMANY – June 29, 2015] – Germany recently marked a huge milestone in support of the legalization of marijuana. Germany created the first comprehensive draft law, which sets out to regulate the production and distribution of marijuana and it’s by products, in collaboration with recommending the implementation of prevention programs. Imagine walking into a coffee shop to buy a couple grams of marijuana. Instead of calling the police, the cashier provides drug education and drug safety, prior to finalizing the sale. Many backers see this as the future of the marijuana industry in Germany. The comprehensive draft law stipulates who will get a permit to buy and sell marijuana and it’s by products, product pricing, and how much tax is required to be paid on the purchase and selling.
Though the draft law represents as a precedent for Germany, no one is getting their hopes up. Many supports agree that the road to legalization in Germany is filled obstacles. Some describe it as a pointless attempt as the parliamentary committees and conservatives in power will never let the law pass. Long before comprehensive draft law was presented, the district of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg in Berlin was preparing to open the first legal Amsterdam-style coffee shop in Görlitzer Park. However, nearly two years later, the coffee shop is still not launched and the project is still in the works. Though many supports feel that full legalization is still a few years away, the draft law creates and opens up a discussion on the legalization of marijuana. An estimated three million Germans use drugs on a regular basis, consuming between 200 - 400 tons of marijuana a year. Additionally, recent surveys show a steady increase in the growing support for marijuana legalization. Despite this, many conservatives have strong opinions in regards to the war on drugs and are searching for answers in an attempt to gain control. They feel that chasing after drug dealers and drug user does not work, and neither will legalizing them. Furthermore, they feel that many questions need to be answered in regard to the possible dangers that could result from the anticipated increased consumption that would occur through legalization.
Many supporters of the draft law feel that with the proposed law, the discussion is gaining momentum in support of marijuana legalization. Furthermore, their thought is that the war on drugs costs millions so why not tax it as a legal drug trade, and earn money while doing so? The Netherlands, Portugal, Uruguay, and even the United States have already taken steps towards legalization however, the Germans maintain that the federal system holds many barriers leading to difficulties in legalization. Though the comprehensive draft law is a great step towards the legalization of cannabis, legalizing a drug that is illegal is not an easy task as many regulations surround the movement.