Cannabis Wird in Deutschland Legalisiert
Cannabis will be legalized in Germany.
It was recently announced in German parliament the political parties of the SPD, Green, and FDP plan to legalize cannabis. While not a surprise, this marks a significant turning point in the German government’s approach to cannabis. After looking at two related topics of the black market and asylum seekers, one can understand the pragmatic approach of legalizing cannabis.
Laws against cannabis vary by state. For example, Berlin, known for its liberal leanings, decriminalizes up to 15 grams of cannabis. Bavaria, often considered to be on the other side of the social spectrum to Berlin, decriminalizes up to 6 grams of cannabis. Both states have their own method of enforcing federal and local cannabis laws and both states face the challenge of managing the black market.
The issue of the black market is exemplified through Görlizter Park. Görlitzer Park is a communal area in Kreuzberg, a district of Berlin. Along with a couple of other parks, Görlitzer Park is the place to buy marijuana when you do not know where else to go in Berlin, and everyone knows it. If one were to walk around Görly, it would not be long before someone makes the offer to sell marijuana. Due to the lenient laws and police policy, one can experience dozens of solicitations in a short time period, so much so that the local community will complain, prompting the police to crack down on illicit cannabis sales. For a shortened period of time, the park will not have the usual business, but as the police presence diminishes, the park returns to standard operations until there is enough overflow and complaints and the next round of police crackdowns occur, continuing the cycle.
What complicates matters further are some of the people selling cannabis. Germany has been lauded for its asylum and refugee policies however due to rules on asylum seekers who often are not able to get work visas, they are more likely to turn to illicit markets like that of cannabis to supplement an income. This in turn creates additional legal challenges as it can cause asylum seekers to be jailed or build the case to revoke their asylum claims, adding additional costs to the German judicial system and further complicating the societal dialogue of refugees and asylum seekers as a whole.
The legalization of cannabis, depending on its implementation, will dramatically reduce the issue of Germany’s black market and alleviate issues linked between asylum seekers and drug charges. The German government will have an additional source of tax revenue, potentially up to five billion euros a year, as well as a new industry that will employ tens of thousands of people. Entrepreneurs are taking notice and the task to build the German cannabis industry will yield substantial financial gains.
While the aforementioned examples explain the pragmatism behind the German parliament’s plan to legalize cannabis, there is an additional argument that can be made to support the government’s decision. In the first article of the German constitution one will read the phrase “Die Würde des Menschen ist unantastbar”. This translates to “The dignity of man is inviolable” and as the German government approaches legalization this will allow another avenue individuals can take for managing health issues, allowing many to have a more dignified approach to pain management.
Germany’s upcoming legalization of cannabis will yield a net positive effect on society and it is time to prepare for its introduction.