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Swedish politicians fear legalized pot in Denmark

Published: 22 Nov 2012 12:07 GMT+01:00

Copenhagen Mayor Frank Jensen has called for a "paradigm shift" in the perception of cannabis, voicing his support for legalizing the sale of marijuana and hashish.

Part of his argument is that police enforcement efforts have proved fruitless.

"We now want to take the trade away from the gangs and create a controlled market where people can buy cannabis and know its strength," Jensen said in an interview last month with the Copenhagen Post.

"By regulating it we can also bring healthcare professionals closer to people that abuse cannabis."

But the Copenhagen mayor's cannabis legalization call has sparked concerns in southern Sweden, where marijuana would be for sale just a short train or car trip away if legalized.

Nineteen local politicians from municipalities in Skåne, as well as Skåne region councillor Anders Åkesson of the Green Party, have penned a protest letter to Jensen expressing their displeasure with the plans.

"We want to distance ourselves from every step that could change attitudes to narcotics in the Öresund Region," the politicians wrote in their letter to Jensen.

Åkesson fears that legal cannabis sales in Copenhagen would "legitimize" the drug.

"There is a clear risk that the drug will end up in the hands of more children and young people if it's sold in stores in Copenhagen," Åkesson told the regional Sydsvenskan newspaper.

Jensen wants to carry out a 3-year trial of regulated marijuana and hashish sales in Copenhagen for anyone over 18.

So far, however, Jensen's plans have gained little traction with the Danish government and parliament.

TT/The Local/dl

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Your comments about this article

12:40 November 22, 2012 by engagebrain
"We want to distance ourselves from every step that could change attitudes to narcotics in the Öresund Region,"

but it is not 'narcotics it is cannabis that is being discussed.

Cannabis is safer than alcohol or tobacco - heaven forbid scientific evidence might actually influence politicians.
12:50 November 22, 2012 by Alohart
For years, anyone in southern Sweden who wants to buy pot has been able to do so by taking a short train or car trip to Christiania. So how much would this change really affect southern Sweden?

Mayor Jensen's proposal makes far more sense than maintaining the current situation. I wish him luck in fighting old, outdated attitudes.
13:31 November 22, 2012 by me_i_sverige
They are crazy. Buying sex is illegal in Sweden and legal in Denmark. Drinking alcohol in public places in Sweden is illegal but legal in Denmark. and, about Marijuana, it's always legal in Christiania. just cross the bridge & you get it. What's the fuss in it from Swedish politician?
13:44 November 22, 2012 by Achilles7
I bet you Jensen is a pot smoker...
14:40 November 22, 2012 by millionmileman
This could be the possible reason that the citizens of Denmark are paradoxically the world's happiest people with coinsidently the the highest tax rates on Earth!
14:53 November 22, 2012 by philster61
Everything thing enjoyable is illegal in Sweden... Swedes don't do joy.......
15:52 November 22, 2012 by Decedo
Backward thinking by equally backward politicians.
16:17 November 22, 2012 by smilingjack
now I find out about christiana!

had friends over 4 semi farewell drinks saturday night. 3 thousand kr worth of booze. yeah everyone had a great time until just after midnight when the first person threw up. the rest bundled into taxis a few hours later barely able to walk and no one got out of bed until late afternoon the next day in an awful awful state. some violentl ill. except the pot smoker who was up at 8am fresh as a daisy and right as rain. smoked about 30kr worth of gunga and had the best time giggling my stupid little head off.

by all means let society encourage more drinking and prohibit cannabis. it will be to their own detriment. watched one of those dodgy yank cop shows - narcotic squad or some crap where a dozen obese redneck cops in full body armour rip this guys door of its hinges - go in with machine guns aimed and bust a guy in the middle of rolling a joint and get him with - 3 freaking grams! thrown to the floor. roughed up. handcuffed and dragged away with the morons all high fiving each other. job well done. another bad guy off the streets.

its the usa pressuring the world to make cannabis a class 1 drug. fortunately for some countries - and even states within the usa - have a backbone and are sick of p&ssing 7 kazillion $$ a year up against the wall for nothing.

fight the good fight. LEGALISE IT!

whats next - gays dont deserve to be stoned to death and are normal people like you and me that are entitled to be married? women get the right to vote?
17:12 November 22, 2012 by gumbojinx
and potentially opening up many jobs in horticulture and I'm sure their are many ready trained home growers ready to take up those posts...
20:39 November 22, 2012 by FlyingTooLow
All card-carrying members of the DEA need to read: Shoulda Robbed a Bank

Here is one of its reviews:

5.0 out of 5 stars... If David Sedaris had written 'Catcher in the Rye'..this would be it, June 30, 2012

Amazon Verified Purchase

This review is from: Shoulda Robbed a Bank (Kindle Edition)

I have never smoked pot in my life...nor do I ever care to.

I read about this book in numerous Huffington Post comments. Thought I would read it because I know nothing about marijuana or the people involved with it. I am ecstatic that I did. Funny, Funny, Funny!!!

The chapters are like short stories. Stories about unloading boats with helicopters, close encounters with law enforcement, traveling through the jungles of South America. The chapter about the author's first time smoking marijuana made me feel like I was with him...coughing.

All of the characters were just a group of loveable, nice guys and girls. Not what I had been raised to believe...hysterical maniacs high on pot bent on death and mayhem. They were nothing like that.

If you have ever read any of David Sedaris' books, and like them...you will love Shoulda Robbed a Bank.

And the crazy things happening reminded me of Holden Caufield in 'Catcher in the Rye' and the way he staggered through life.

The way the words are put together are like nothing I have ever heard. I am sure I will use many of the sayings found in this book just to dazzle my friends. A terrific read. I love this book.
23:09 November 22, 2012 by jdbpogo
don't know if anybody was paying attention to the U.S. eclection last week but 2 states colorado and washington just legalized marijuana for recreational use. also 4 more states leagalized it for medical purposes, bringing that total to 18. its just a matter of time....
15:02 November 23, 2012 by cogito
"...watched one of those dodgy yank cop shows - narcotic squad or some crap where a dozen obese redneck cops in full body armour rip this guys door of its hinges..."

@#8. Well finally I see why your posts are so wacko. You mistake TV shows for reality. Don't know if you're ever in the real world, but as #11 says, the trend is toward legalising pot.
15:09 November 23, 2012 by Onetime
Attitudes are changing. People are realizing it's not as bad as they were taught. Have enjoyed cannabis for 25 years. I have a college degree, and I'm a tax payer. Middle class joe like most of you. Never lost a job. Don't smoke and drive (or drink and drive). Don't do any other drugs. Grow my own a few small plants at a time. Autoflower plants don't need any special setup and don't get bigger than a couple of feet tall. You can use a vaporizer or make cookies if you don't like smoking. My point is, it's not harmless, but almost, especially if you're a responsible adult. Cigarettes and alcohol are worse by far. Legalize, educate, regulate.
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