On a day when it was revealed that two-and-a-half bottles of wine a week (note: - not a night) could "save your life" comes important news about cannabis. The Times had a front page lead story today suggesting that the Government is going to press ahead and re-classify cannabis as a Class B drug, despite pressure from its own advisory group that would like the drug to be decriminalised.
I have to say that I'm old-fashioned on the subject of cannabis, taking the view that by eventually reducing the legal status of cannabis to that of tobacco, say, we would have to become accustomed to children getting stoned much in the way that some 10 - 12 year olds routinely try out tobacco now. I've always thought that that prospect would be unacceptable to the vast majority of people in this country.
My social work practice over the last 16 years has reinforced my opposition - I've worked with teenagers and young adults who've had their mental health shattered by exposure to cannabis. Depression, bipolar syndrome and schizophrenia can result. Medical research backs this up.
So for me, a reclassification can't come soon enough. What do you think?