Dunkley: ‘Reckless And Not Thought Through’

January 21, 2014

[Updated] “Reckless and not thought through,” said Minister of National Security Michael Dunkley in response to the Opposition’s press statement and draft Bill related to cannabis possession and handling.

Earlier today [Jan 21] the PLP announced they drafted an Amendment which they intend to table in the House of Assembly next month, calling for the removal of criminal sanctions for cannabis possession under 20 grams [0.7oz].

The Minister said, “In the first instance, the Bill, as drafted, legalizes cannabis possession, handling and use and would do so without the benefit of necessary public input.

“The people of Bermuda will recall that one of our principal objectives in the whole debate around cannabis is to eliminate the restrictions on travel to the United States that can result from a conviction and also to ensure that the United States Government supports our approach to this issue.

“To contemplate introducing a Bill that has not first achieved these aims is simply irresponsible. Secondly, every jurisdiction that has legalized cannabis has done so with detailed regulations dealing with critical issues like production, sale, supply and conditions of use. On its own this draft Bill is reckless because none of those things seems to have been considered.

“This Government accepts the worldwide trend in this area of cannabis use both personally and for medical purposes but no country has embarked on a change to their laws at the stroke of a pen but have followed a course similar to what we are doing: research, public debate and education, refining policies and procedures and ultimately legislation.

“To suggest that a Bill in this form or any other is the first step in this process is naive at best and dangerous at worst. This Government has been very clear about our intentions and the process we are following.

“The average cannabis cigarette contains about ½ gram of cannabis. If the PLP’s Bill became law, it would be legal for someone to possess 40 joints. This is outrageous and I refuse to believe that this is supported by the people of Bermuda.

“For collaboration to be useful it must make sense and be reflective of reality and best practice. This is no more than pandering by the Opposition and it fails both tests from the outset.”

Update 6.29pm: A PLP spokesperson said, “The OBA has once again rejected something that they claim to support. This time, it comes as the PLP follows through with an election platform promise to decriminalise possession of cannabis.

“Rather than deal with the facts, Minister Dunkley has attempted to scare the public into thinking that the PLP has proposed legalization of cannabis – a typical response from a politician who can’t decide which side of the fence he stands on and who can’t be trusted to keep a promise.

“The PLP are clear, we want to remove penalties for possession so that no one in the future is added to the stop list and prevented from fulfilling their potential due to simple possession of Marijuana.

“We hope that the OBA will back this common sense reform as they examine wider changes to our laws; However while they are working on those changes, we look forward to their support in Parliament as the PLP moves to make sure that all residents receive the same treatment as an the son of an OBA Minister; a future without a criminal record for simple possession of cannabis.

“The people or Bermuda deserve real leadership on this issue, and not knee jerk reactions that jeopardize the future aspirations of our people.”

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  1. PLP Bill: Remove Sanctions For Under 20 Grams | Bernews.com | January 21, 2014
  1. Kangoocar says:

    Thank you min Dunkley for being as expected intelligent and wise to all of the ramifications of legalizing weed!! As you correctly pointed out, we need to be sure the US is on board with this!! This is just another ill thought out proposal from a past government (plp) who will do anything for the sake of votes!! Just like when they were in power they would shoot from the hip and hope it hits the target, well we are all very aware how that worked out!! Thank you for being the voice of reason!!

    • Pants on Fire says:

      Who said anything about legalising weed… Oh yes, that was your Minister Dunkley.

      Cool, OBA Minister’s son can get off, but not other people.

      OBA walking a VERY fine line here.

      • Kangoocar says:

        Typical plp short memory??? I guess I have to remind you of the name Dickerson??? (plp)

        • Pants on Fire says:

          “However while they are working on those changes, we look forward to their support in Parliament as the PLP moves to make sure that all residents receive the same treatment as an the son of an OBA Minister; a future without a criminal record for simple possession of cannabis.”

          End of story! End the convictions, lets get on with it.

          Defend the OBA if you like, but you are certainly on the wrong side of this argument.

          • Black Soil says:

            PLP are trying to out-OBA the OBA..!! smdh.

            • SMH says:

              What happened to the work of Rolfe Commisiong who was paid GOOD money to get this issue of the stop list sorted out.

              • Hmmm says:

                PLP are playing games with the People of Bermuda, stop falling into their web of “We tried, but th eother lot let you down” nonsense.

                This has to be done right, or not at all. Guerilla law changes have far reaching and damaging consequences.

                PLP either are stupid, or are using this to make them look good and the OBA bad…Please don’t fall for their chess games people. rise above thei cheap tricks and recognize them for what they didn’t do when they were in charge for 14 years.

          • Kangoocar says:

            How am I on the wrong side of the argument??? You implied only OBA Ministers sons get off without criminal convictions, I corrected you by reminding you of your boy Dickerson!! You would be taken more serious if you were actually stating facts as opposed to out right lies!!! I can call them lies because you know damn well the plp Dickerson got off for the same thing!! On another matter, Rum Swizzle Burt seems to have been let off himself??? Everything seems very quite on the Liquor Gate front these days doesn’t it???
            Everyone needs to understand all the ramifications of such a law with the US on this matter and the OBA is doing the responsible thing by stating they need to know themselves!!! The impact on IB business from a law like this will be irreversible!!! Having them clear customs in the US to catch connecting flights will be a nightmare for them and let’s not forget that it will be no picnic for us either! If you have never flew into the US from another country you will have no clue in what I am talking about!!!!!

            • Makai Dickerson says:

              You know what? I’m a bit tired of people bringing my name up in any case that pertains to weed when it goes viral. Minoz son’s case and my case were two different things.

              My case was leaked to the press before it was even known for fact that it was weed in my possession. It went through the curt of public opinion and I was hung by the jury, the powers that be in their wisdom decided to take my case to curt where it didn’t belong, because by the law as it stood I was entitled to be given the chance of a caution. That was bypassed for reasons I still don’t understand.

              Minoz son had more then me and a tool deemed for use of weed and as the law stood at the time he was not entitled to be considered for a caution. He did not admit guilt of possession, that’s why his case went to curt.

              But that’s nether here or there because nobody should have to go through any court proceedings because they are in possession of a plant. That’s what this bill put forward by the PLP speaks to. The fact that the OBA are against this bill after clearly stating that they are for what it represents shows that they are doing nothing but playing politics with peoples lives. Minister Dunkley is playing a game and should be ashamed of himself. Let’s get out of petty politics and do things right. If the OBA truly wants to work together with the PLP now’s the time to prove it. All this chatter is worthless, actions show it all. Nobody can give the PLP full credit for this if the OBA supports and backs it. People then will see progress being made by both sides.

              Isn’t that better for everybody?

              • Shut up bie!!! 2 wrongs don’t make a right and never will. How can you who had a narcotic,(that was and is still illegal)in your possession be considered any less of an offense because it was, (as you say) weighed less?

                • sage says:

                  Have you no common sense or understanding? Courts use weight as a guideline , more weight =bigger offense, unless you have friends/family in high places. Your’e WRONG!

                • Indepedent says:

                  @ Raymond Ray,

                  Shut the **** up! IF you don’t understand the law, then shut up. I too was given a caution, and what he is saying is accurate.

                  That’s why I tried to explain to Suzie Quattro that this cases was diffent. YOU HAVE TO ADMIT IT WAS YOURS TO BE GIVEN A CAUTION. I had to do it, and it sounds like Makai had to as well.

                  And for you to make a dumb statment about weight lol, man what rock do you live under. If weight didnt play a role in convictions, then a person carrying a joint would be looked at the same as somone with 100lb’s you dumb a$$.

                  I use to think you had a little brain from your post, but you’ve earned your dumba$$ status now.

                  • To you who chooses go by the name of, “Independent” that is my “independent view” and doesn’t have to be to yours or anyone else liking…
                    Sorry to have crossed wires :-(

              • X man says:

                Hang in there Bey’
                Your know when you make a mistake in Bermuda it’s liable to be made bigger than it is.
                Just expose the good side of your life and the critic’s will eventually shut up.
                Hey bro you don’t think that all these OBA,PLP MP’s has lived a pure and holy life do you.

              • Sad says:

                I didn’t realise that you had to face a jury in Magistrates courts these days. Man they must be really after you huh? I mean and going before a jury and being let off scott free. You had it rough you did.

                • Makai Dickerson says:

                  If you read what I wrote. I said I was hung by the jury in the court of public opinion. That being news blogs like this and what not. SMH

                  • Sandy Bottom says:

                    You got let off in court. The public had an opinion because you were running to be an MP. Stop pretending you were hard done by. You wre guilty and were given a break. At least have the grace to admit you did ok.

                    • Betty Trump says:

                      Well said Mr. Dickinson. This is a matter that Mr. Dunkley has given nothing more than “Knee Jerk Response to”. He is falling on his sword, and the look on his face revealed this last night on the news. He was fighting hard to come back in play. The reality he should have said to the PLP, come on lets get this going and see how we can work towards a bill like this can be past.

                      NO NO instead he took on a childlike approach and said:

                      1. I did not bring the bill forward, so why should I even consider looking or debating it. “My way or the Highway” by Mr. Dunkley. REALLY !!

                      2. “Cooperation and Collaboration” …I think not, after all I did not initiate it, it was not done on my terms REALLY…Mr. Dunkley

                      3. This reveals the UBPoba are not doing politics differently, as they promised pre-election, but rather are falling back to their old UBP ways. Change I think NOT !!

                      4. The UBPoba “Transparency and Collaboration” is killing them….WOW…their Buzz words are false

                      5. Funny a key and important issue on Gambling Mr. Dunkley is not seeking to give folks a say….now he wants to have more debate on this minor change…REALLY ….he is only fooling himself…

                      Well done, Well Done….PLP Keep it up !! Stand strong for the people.

              • Kangoocar says:

                HHMMMM !! Looking at the time you just posted you babble here, 1.04 am and when I scroll down a bit and starting at 1.08am the nonsense of the Bettie’s starts with blasts every approx 4 mins!!! Me starting to think you are in fact one of the Bettie’s??????

                • Makai Dickerson says:

                  You put that together based on the times of the post huh? To bad you gain no points for intelligence there.

                  I post under Makai Dickerson, here, on FB and any other public forum. I need not hide under a pin name to speak my mind.

                  Me thinks you are in fact the one posting babble.

                  • Kangoocar says:

                    Yeah right!!, I have a couple of igloos for sale in Cuba, are you interested in any of them??? Being you feel slighted by the ” Jury ” I will help you out and sell to only you at a cheap price!!

              • pebblebeach says:

                Sit down lil fella and be quiet…

            • Betty Trump says:

              “Rather than deal with the facts, Minister Dunkley has attempted to scare the public into thinking that the PLP has proposed legalization of cannabis – a typical response from a politician who can’t decide which side of the fence he stands on and who can’t be trusted to keep a promise.

              Well said, Well done PLP, keep working hard for the people of Bermuda !! Well done….I stand strong today and proud…. keep it up….

              • Betty Trump says:

                Today the Opposition have moved forward working on behalf of the people of Bermuda. I am most pleased with this hard working Opposition. I look forward to more bills been put forward in the house. The outcome will have significant outcomes in the near future…keep at it PLP,…Keep at it…

                I am most please that the youthfulness of the Opposition are just brilliant and strong. I look forward to hearing more from them in the Senate and HAO. Folks keep your eyes on these PLP youthful folks whom are the next generation taking our country forward.

                Your reply is 100% correct and brilliant….

              • Betty Trump says:

                BRILLIANT, BRILLIANT, BRILLIANT< BRILLIANT…PLP

                Well done, and what a brilliant response by the PLP. This is right on the mark. Keep pushing the "people's agenda forward PLP", keep standing on issues that impact our youth and Seniors. Keep pushing forward, the results are great and huge.

                The impact of todays actions speaks to many, whom now see that the UBPoba are indeed not serious about engaging in real "COLLOBRATION." Folks also see UBPoba do not hold true to their Promises or key theme words as put out pre-election.

                I am so proud of the PLP youthfulness that, today a light shines brighter than ever… I now have hope for the future….Keep speaking, keep working for Bermuda and its people…Stay focus and doing the work for the people of Bermuda….WEL DONE !! GREAT REPLY……

                I am loving it…..

                • yesman says:

                  “We hope that the OBA will back this common sense reform as they examine wider changes to our laws… we look forward to their support in Parliament as the PLP moves to make sure that all residents receive the same treatment as an the son of an OBA Minister”

                  I have to agree with the PLP on this one. They got this one right. The OBA are using too much tricks and Dunkley won’t even take a stance. To call the PLP’s motion ‘recklace’ is darn right stupid after an OBA Minister’s son just got off of all related marijuana charges even after being caught with a grinder.

                  All citizens should be treated fairly and equal regardless of their political affiliations.

          • Don’t even go there “Pants on Fire”(6:38pm)how some people seem to have “short memories” :-(
            Remember a certain young fella who was going to run for the Progressive Labour Party… What happen to him?

      • Bermuda Male says:

        What about the PLP candidate, whose charges were dropped for simple small possession? And there are numerous cases where all sorts of people have been treated in the same manner for possession of small quantities.

        And nowhere does Mr. Dunkley state that he is against decriminalization or amending the drug laws. It seems he is against rushing through legislative amendments without contemplating other legislation that would be required to supplement the amendment.

        I know, from your posts, that you hate Mr. Dunkley and his Government cohorts, but at least be a tad bid objective when objecting to any and all actions by them.

        It is simply foolish to pass such legislation without comprehensive research on the best ways to achieve an accurate and adequate law.

        • Pants on Fire says:

          We disagree. That shouldn’t be a surprise.

          Doesn’t matter who it is, people shouldn’t be going to court, clogging up our judicial system, and being criminalized for simple possession.

          If you don’t like the bill, amend it. But reject it outright, well that’s just…. Dumb!

          • Bermuda Male says:

            If it didn’t matter who was it to you then it surprises me why, in your earlier post, you stated:

            “Cool, OBA Minister’s son can get off, but not other people.

            OBA walking a VERY fine line here.”

            Your post insinuates that only OBA insiders get off of small possession charges. So in that instance it does matter to you the person who was shown leniency in the law.

            • LOL (original TM*) says:

              “It’s ok when we do it.”

              LOL get with the program

        • Indepedent says:

          @ Bermuda Male,

          If you feel this way about weed, why aren’t you up in arms about gambling? They both will have an impact on society, so why you don’t mind gambling legislation being rushed through, but not weed?

    • Herbalist says:

      Kangoocar when you talk to Dunkley tonight over the phone tell him to shut up.

      The oba is in charge and people of a certain class have not seen your party do nothing. All they do is worried about their rich friends. Same old ubp in power again. Don’t worry if things don’t change the oba will be kicked out and back to changing the name to something else. All the black face that fronted for them last election lol makes you wonder why their not in positions now. Ask the three blacks that were part of the original BDA before the merge they received pink slips the other day, bet you $100 they didn’t see Craig cutting there throats that fast. Which made a majority strong UBP. Trust me when I say this Craig didn’t make that or any decision in that party. I assume they give him a plane ticket every 2 weeks and tell him fly off the island while the MASTERS in charge run this country.

      • Herbalist says:

        And tell me why my boys are on the stop list for the same thing MP Trevor son got off with. You bunch are all unfair. Yea I understand I have no connections with rich ubp biggers.

        • Bermuda Male says:

          It has nothing to do with UBP ‘biggers.’

          As mentioned a PLP candidate was afforded the same treatment as prescribed by the law. It is the judge’s discretion as to how to apply the law.

          Reminds of a few years back when an accounting intern had his small possession charges dropped. If you read the comments (see below link) it was the same nonsense being posted that he must be white and part of the UBP somehow. When actually it was a young black Bermudian male.

          Plenty of people get small possession charges dropped and Mr. Daniels, as a lawyer, is more than aware if this fact.

        • Because there is one law for a certain group of young men and another for the other. I’ve seen this pattern all my life and it therefore comes as no surprise. It’s who you are in Bermuda. If you’re white you’re right! It’s a reason Westgate is 98% black and it’s not because blacks have a genetic predisposition to criminal activity as some would have us believe.

          • Hmmm says:

            But most of the police and judges are black….so your point is is moot. Weak

            • Mazumbo says:

              Ya but most of them are not Bermudian and there has always been a biased profile against black Bermudians, and being black does not mean that you have the best interest of black people, its called Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome !!!!!!!!!!

              • Balanced Facts says:

                All Magistrates are Bermudian and all Supreme Court Judges but ONE…and he is a commercial court judge and he is the only white one! So, Mazumbo, get the facts before you run off with nonsense…dangerous PLP practice, dont let the truth get in the way of a good story!

                • Concerned Citizen says:

                  Hey Balanced, get your facts straight. Archie Warner is Bajan……..anyway, good move by the PLP, bad reaction from Dunkley.

                  • Hmmm says:

                    Read the article…. So many people just read the headline….what have we as a nation become. Puppets of headlines is shameful

              • aceboy says:

                Huh? If it isn’t white people keeping you down it is black foreigners now? Boy, you have victim mentality something BAD!

                • Mazumbo says:

                  Hey dreamer if you where following the conversation from the beginning you would understand and notice that the issue was the % of men that compared to another you’ll be surprised what they would find on white guys if they stopped them as frequent as blacks over the years.

      • Kangoocar says:

        Yup rite on que again!!! Race gets brought into the conversation??? I guess when you run out of bullets and have thrown your pistol at your enemy, the only thing left is to bring up race??? Only thing that surprised me was you didn’t use the word ” plantation??” Nothing short of despicable!!! Take your racial BS somewhere else champ!! The civilized world moved on without you many years ago!!!

        • Intrigued says:

          Aren’t you the guy that says PLP voters are too dumb to know better? I think you may need some MAWI in your life.

        • Mazumbo says:

          I think Bermuda is the only place in the world where racial issues don’t exist no more, as long as you have Colonist bigots your gonna have racial issues. Nothings changed much since the Berlin Conference of 1884-1885 when the European Nations went on the scavenger hunt and sliced up Africa between themselves for their own greed. Different time same ideology.

          • LOL (original TM*) says:

            Ya that worked the US inna………….

            Please man just admit you like to hate.

            LOL

        • smdh says:

          You need to shut it. U think u know it all but really. U only goin on like this cause you online. And yes its hard to accept but must cause its reality. Oba dont care about every1. Race is the issue.. not my fault im blck. N there not for us. Look at mp Bascome from st g. How he get majority voten win in his const. And still not get elected. Bs. U ppl wanna use us .. its a shame..

          • smdh says:

            Dont get me wrong on this. I love all colours. After all it is one universe we in.

            • Mazumbo says:

              Yes it is one universe but the reality is some of the Europeans still have the (I’m the superior being mentality)and under mind and marginalize people of color and when we expose it they shout the race card, the problem is they want to be Lord of the universe.

              • LOL (original TM*) says:

                No the problem is that you aren’t sure who is and who isn’t racist so you and others constantly lable a whole race. If it’s not ok for others to stereo-type blacks why is it ok when you do it.

                LOL let me guess 400 hundred years right maybe you need to look into you history for example did you know that Africans invaded europe long before the atlatic slave trade..

                • Mazumbo says:

                  Ya but they taught the Europeans how to live civil eg,(not living with animals in their dwelling, hygiene, taught mathematics, astrology, medicine, science ect, ect, but we have our own land which is the envy of the world and it is the birth place of civilization.
                  And we where in America before Christopher got lost and stumbled there, even though we ventured to these places we were more Civil then the Europeans who plundered, raped and stole their way to prosperity.
                  And your point was. LMAO

          • Bermuda Male says:

            What the hell are you talking about?

            Mr. Bascome is an MP now because he received majority of the votes.

    • sage says:

      58%+ of the American public, and the President,to some extent, is on board. When you stop groveling at Minister Dunkley’s feet try becoming intelligent and wise for yourself.

    • Betty Trump says:

      “Dunkley Stop Stop with your Political Posturing.”

      COLLOBORATION…Collaboration…..COLLOBORATION……REALLY !!

      “Rather than deal with the facts, Minister Dunkley has attempted to scare the public into thinking that the PLP has proposed legalization of cannabis – a typical response from a politician who can’t decide which side of the fence he stands on and who can’t be trusted to keep a promise.

      “The PLP are clear, we want to remove penalties for possession so that no one in the future is added to the stop list and prevented from fulfilling their potential due to simple possession of Marijuana.

      Dunkley stop Stop with your Political Posturing. The UBPoba indicated they wanted to work in “Collaboration” with the Opposition, here is another great opportunity and your just spinning, spinning in respect to this matter. STOP it is getting old now, and the real UBPoba are now rearing their heads….Come on stop with your lack of real interest in Bermuda’s young people whom have been impacted by this law, while others that you know very well have walked free.

      • Joonya says:

        Betty Sheep, please look up the definition of collaboration. You will find that it does not mean to bow down to every PLP’s idea instantly. YOU LOST THE ELECTION AND YOU ARE NOT GOVT!!
        You lot remind me of whinning chilren who sulk all the time.
        This issue HAS to be thought out properly. Definintley this one.
        Take your blinders off for once.. SHEESH MAN!

        • Betty Trump says:

          “COLLABORATION on the UBPoba TERMS only…..that is the UBPOba definition”……

          THe definition was outline in a brilliant article by John Barritt a few weeks ago (READ IT, might enlighten you to the real political discourse). The reality is the UBPoba does not want to Collaboration unless it is done on their terms only. This is the real difference here, and so far they have actually reveal they were not serious about their key BUZZ or sound bite words such as TRANSPARENCY< COLLABORATION AND HONESTY….REALLY

          Failure to live up to any of their key Buzz words, so it reveals it was merely for votes only….get real dearest one..

  2. Hmmm says:

    Yep agree with this response.

    The PLP are amateurs trying to score political points…. shame on you AGAIN PLP.

    • YADON says:

      Shame on you biggots for wanting to prolong the suffering of our youth and those in dire need medical relief. Shame on you for trying to control what another individual does with their own body. Shame on you for trying to legislate NATURE. NO ONE HAS A RIGHT TO OUTLAW WHAT NATURE OR GOD (DEPENDING ON BELIEF) HAS PUT HERE FOR US.

      GENESIS 1:29- Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.

      • Clive Spate says:

        God never said that. Somebody wrote it down a long time ago!!

        • YADON says:

          Someone a lot smarter than you Sir.

          • Clive Spate says:

            More imaginative maybe. The Old Testament is a very creative piece of fiction!

            • sage says:

              Much like ministerial statements.

            • pabear says:

              so what do you call the new testament? a block buster its all a bunch of lies

              • Hmmm says:

                Surely God could get it correct first time? Why the need for the second book?

      • YADON says:

        Whoever disliked this comment is a very sick person who needs therapy at once. How dare you try and overrule nature and control others. I think you would love North Korea.

        • Terry says:

          “The suffering of our youth”.
          Yea I dislike that.
          Get real.
          A high is a high; medical is a total difference.
          Shalom.

      • Pants on Fire says:

        Don’t get too mad. If Dunkley said “lets legalise” they would have supported him.

        They don’t care about the policy, or the people it affects, they only care about what side the OBA tells them to stand on. And if that is the opposite side of the PLP, all the better.

      • HERBALIFE says:

        so weed is a vegetable or fruit. NOT Medicine yes casual NO

      • For food!Not to be rolled up in a joint and smoked.

  3. Jus' Askin' says:

    Here we go again ;-)

  4. YADON says:

    B.S. Dunkley. There is no reason for debate anymore , the scientific facts have been proven. Just adopt the same model used in Colorado. It is crazy that Fahy can bring in copyright legislation without all the hoopla but something as SIMPLE as a non toxic plant requires all of this STALLING. I am beginning to question whether or not this government has the mental fortitude to lead us in the right direction.

    • Hmmm says:

      Read the ARTICLE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Sandy Bottom says:

      Still waiting for proof it cures cancer.

      • Cancer Survivor says:

        When you prove that ALCOHOL is NOT the gateway drug to crack,heroine,pcp prescription pills etc… Often people are intoxicated from alcohol when deciding to try something harder!!

      • Sandy Bottom says:

        So we’re agreed it doesn’t cure cancer.

        How about proof it makes you a safer driver?

        • pabear says:

          wtf are you talking about sandy a** there’s co. in u.k gw pharm which makes cannabis extracts and sells them to people. rick simpson who cure all kind of different cancer with his cannabis extracts for free i might add so get your head out of your a** and read something on the subject you might learn something

          • Sandy Bottom says:

            Ok. Where is the scientific proof that it cures cancer?

            • sage says:

              There is scientific proof it kills cancer, it targets and destroys cancer cells,it prevents cancer from spreading and cuts off tumor’s blood supply without harming healthy cells.You refuse to look it up or accept it, no one cares. Your childish and vain attempt to cast doubt on ganja’s effectiveness doesn’t sway those who know better.

              • Sandy Bottom says:

                Where is the proof it kills cancer?

                • sage says:

                  You are in front of a computer, research it. Your “skill level” consists of lying, lying to cover up previous lies and repeating the same question over and over, so you shouldn’t be throwing stones.

                • yesman says:

                  Sandy Bottom… Do yourself a favor and STFU and stop trolling.

            • pabear says:

              sandy a** f*** that prove to me it has any of the negative effect that you and all the other haters of cannabis say it has since 1937 people like you have asked us who are for cannabis to proof this and proof that where the f*** was all the proof that it was doing damage when they ban cannabis wft is wrong with this picture

      • Know Thyself says:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7qbtYY4HFOw *Watch it* #theunion

      • LOL (original TM*) says:

        More than enough evidence has been shown to you in the last thread on this. If I recall you chose to breifly look at the first link thrown at you and that was it.

        LOL way to much research on the topic has taken place and is only now being taken up due to people who have a fear or hatered for the plant but slowly you will be dragged toward progress just like prohibition. Oh and I concur eating it is the way togo for health benefits. As and ex smoker I can’t see that the lungs can take smoke well but eating it yes. Note not against people who wish to smoke as long as they know what it will effect over prolonged use.

        • Sandy Bottom says:

          No, there was no evidence it cures cancer. It’s an absurd claim.

          • sage says:

            There is plenty evidence, you buffoon, show some proof to the contrary, you shall soon eat your words.

    • DarkSideofTheMoon says:

      Um, thats cause Fahy does whatever the eff he wants…..

  5. Question says:

    I can agree that the Minister’s statement is well thought out and properly structured. However, his tone in regards to the Opposition is not acceptable if he is interested in collaboration. It is obvious that he is not interested in working with the opposition in any way – - regardless if the Opposition has good or bad ideas (thought out or not).

    He could have simply indicated that the OBA government is looking to have certain structures in place before they move forward, highlight those things and let it be.

    And if he believes that the US government is going to lift their restriction on persons convicted of drug possession, he is sadly mistaken – that is not going to happen, thus according to his statement, this bill will never happen – plain and simple.

    But I’m sure that there will be others who feel otherwise – no problem with that.

    Read and think about what has been stated.

    Q

    • Think says:

      No it not that. Its the pre costumes clarance we have when we travel to the US and no need to apply for a visa to travel to the US is what he is looking out for.

      • Pants on Fire says:

        Yeah, like a visa to colorado. Just making up things now.

        • Bermuda Male says:

          Visas are issued by the Federal Government of the US. Weed is still illegal at the Federal level as of now. So it is a legitimate concern and one that should be researched beforehand.

      • sage says:

        Pre-customs clearance is what I guess you mean, stop fear mongering.

        • sonso says:

          How you know that it wont be an issue? All the US has to say is fine. And by the way, we are taking TSA agents off of the island, and BDA planes will now disembark at the international terminals of US airports.

          • sage says:

            I am basing my opinion partly on what came out of the mouths of two recent American Consuls when I asked them that specific question, and any actions (or lack thereof) by way of sanction or policy changes aimed at Switzerland, Holland, Portugal, Canada or Uraguay and there are none that I (or the Consul who also pointed this out to me) am aware of.Please enlighten us. Is having to apply for a visa so bad when compared to 99 year ban from entry for a seed or a microscopic flake for too many of our youth? Ever wonder why DUI doesn’t qualify for the “stoplist” or “data base of ineligibility”?

        • Question says:

          Be real – - pre-customs clearance is not what he discussed in the article – - yes, it is an issue with those without a conviction travel to the US – no denying that. BUT THAT is not the focus on his statement – that’s my point.

          There is no fear mongering here – just straight, hard, cold fact. The US is not going to move on their federal stance on MaryJane – period. They have made it clear with their refusal to change the federal laws regarding it – - state level law is different for each.

          So to sit there and indicating that it won’t be an issue is childish and naive – plain and simple.

          Just as the Minister cannot assume they will not have a problem – - I can safely assume that they will.

          Q

      • Question says:

        This is from his statement above “The people of Bermuda will recall that one of our principal objectives in the whole debate around cannabis is to eliminate the restrictions on travel to the United States that can result from a conviction and also to ensure that the United States Government supports our approach to this issue.”

        That statement has nothing to do with pre-clearance and visa applications @Think – - it has to do with convictions of drug possession and the stop list – - which is what I discussed in my post.

        Get it right.

        Q

        • sage says:

          The principal objective should be to stop denying sick people medicine, stop the unjust criminalization of anyone, young or old, stop flushing millions down the toilet, not just to allow first offenders to circumvent consequences.In their zeal to please “Uncle Sam” they don,t even care what mother( Britain) thinks, apparently. Obama has given legalization the thumbs up anyway.

    • Betty Trump says:

      Well said @QUestion, I also doubt that the UBPoba are serious about working with the Opposition. The PLP may have just moved another chess piece that proves the point. Keep up the good work PLP !! Well done Mark Daniels. Well done !!

      • Sandgrownan says:

        Chess…more like checkers!

        Personally, I wouldn’t work with the opposition given all the harm they did while in Government. I understand the hoopla, but really, what is wrong with Dunkley’s statement other than the fact he said it? It’s a reasoned, thoughful response offered by an adult.

  6. Bermuda Male says:

    While I applaud the proactive nature of the Opposition, it appears that this legislative amendment was rushed as evidenced by its 1.5 pages length (excluding the interpretations). From the wording it appears that it just legalization. While in not against such actions more analysis needs to be conducted to understand the impacts of such a move.

    Has Mr. Daniels studied foreign legislation or did he come up with these on his own?

    It is just not that simple and as any level headed person knows that for every action there is a reaction or consequences. Have these been thought through?

    There are plenty of logistics that need to be considered as well as public opinion.

    There needs to be an information program for people to understand these consequences and benefits in the same manner as other topics have been discussed. And I believe that the new group commissioned with overseeing this topic is scheduled to facilitate such public discussions.

    The timing of this announcement is quite similar to the conscription bill put forward. It isn’t a coincidence that these bills were put forward immediately following pronouncements by the Government on the route they are taking regarding these subjects. I would rather a comprehensive information and research program be undertaken and the results communicated to the public as opposed to passing, what seems to be, a rushed and politically convenient document.

    No referendum necessary, but the public should see what the potential impact will be. I for one think it would be a good thing to enact some form of decriminalization and amend our antiquated drug laws. But it should be done correctly the first time (I.e. DUI legislation that needed to be fixed) and not rushed. I eagerly await the findings of the appointed group who are commissioned with overseeing and progressing this topic.

    • Bermuda Male says:

      One good example of a lack of foresight is the following scenario:

      If someone is caught with 19 grams all packaged in baggies, twists or whatever, for obvious reasons (i.e to distribute/sell) are they charged with intent to distribute or are they eligible under the proposed amendment to just receive a warning or simply walk away? If it’s the latter then I wouldn’t mind getting in on that racket as the risk will be low and reward will be extremely high (given the amount of smokers on island). And it wouldn’t be crazy to think that the number of ‘entrepreneurs’ would spike. Good for jobs at least.

      So if anything this document is just the bare bones to a much larger amendment required. Let’s get it right the first time, instead of wasting time.

      • Pants on Fire says:

        You don’t even have to be caught with 20 grams to be charge with supply now.

        You can have stuff ready to be bagged and with cash with only 5 grams now and be arrested for supply.

        The 20 grams and over is AUTOMATIC supply.

    • Pants on Fire says:

      Did you read: http://bernews.com/2014/01/plp-bill-remove-sanctions-for-under-20-grams/ ?

      I think it makes it clear why they PLP didn’t go any further. The rules don’t let them. Key point last paragraph “decisions concerning decriminalization, or de-penalizing small amounts of cannabis, should take place with immediate effect”

      ———————–

      As the Loyal Opposition, the PLP cannot advance any legislative action that involves revenue for the government; however, we have not let this stop our ability to play an active role in ensuring that the interests of the community are being met fairly, justly and with expedience, when appropriate.

      In 2012, the PLP promised in our election platform that we would seek to end the unnecessary criminalization of all of Bermuda’s residents and guests and find new ways to regulate cannabis usage in Bermuda.

      In the Government’s 2013 Speech from the Throne, the One Bermuda Alliance has also expressed their willingness to discuss this issue openly and honestly.

      While we welcome the OBA for taking the lead in creating an island wide discussion with town hall meetings and presentations to come, we feel that such discussions should be limited to the aspects of legalization and/or regulation; and that decisions concerning decriminalization, or de-penalizing small amounts of cannabis, should take place with immediate effect as there is an overwhelming level of support for such initiatives based on the feedback we have heard within our community that reflects the sentiment and contemporary mindset of our people today.

      • Terry says:

        That you Alan?

      • Bermuda Male says:

        If the PLP’s bill is aimed at eventual legalization (I.e producing Govt revenue and which Mr. Burt recently stated that he is not in favor of) then much more legislation, research and regulations are required. Not 3 or 4 paragraphs.

        It would be totally irresponsible to pass a bill without the necessary infrastructure in place.

        Like I said I am for it, but let’s just get it right the first time. With the members of the group commissioned with researching this topic I have no doubt that the proper legislation will be crafted with the input of various sources in the community.

        • Intrigued says:

          You sound like you are on that group.. Good stop talking about Decrim and start talking about legalisation.

          Who cares what Burt said, he ain’t in charge, get on with it!

  7. Pants on Fire says:

    Dunkley can sure change his mind really fast can’t he!

    One minute he’s for it, the next minute he’s not!

    Predictable OBA – can’t be trusted!

    • Hmmm says:

      Read the Article…..!!!!! C’mon don’t be so lazy !!!!!!

    • Barracuda says:

      The truth just isn’t in you .

    • @ Pants on Fire 5:57pm. He never said he was against legalizing herb, weed ganja or any other name you may choose to call an illegal narcotic
      he stated plain and quite clearly it has to be reviewed, “ironong out” any wrongs before jumping off of the cliff…

      • sage says:

        Why is it “jumping off a cliff” as opposed to taking the high road, doing what’s right or ending human rights abuses?

  8. campervan says:

    The leader of the opposition is a gay bashing bible thumper
    Yet the PLP want to decriminalise herb.

    Methinks this has nothing to do with being a progressive party and is a desperate attempt to pander for votes.
    Poor show guys.

    • YADON says:

      What does being Christian have to do with it ?
      GENESIS 1:29- Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.
      God is very clear on the subject.

      • theothersidebda says:

        So then you suggest we make it legal for food and not for smoking then right?

      • Clive Spate says:

        If that is your argument then yes, it is clear. Eat it but don’t smoke it.

        While you’re at it have a chomp on some God given belladonna.

    • Concerned Citizen says:

      I guess your Premier is the same. The only difference is the Opposition Leader has much higher RG poll ratings then your “take a trip and stay out of the way Premier”. He must be doing something right hey? Anyhow, Senator Daniels gave an excellent statement today, and the PLP are to be congratulated for their efforts. I hope the OBA work with the Opposition on this, as Bermuda needs to take the next steps.

  9. Terry says:

    Garbage cans look good.

  10. bermuda born says:

    I support, I want to legalize. I don’t want u to tell me how many joints i can have. cigarettes come in packs of 20 beer comes in cases of 24. it wouldn’t be odd for someone to have 40 bottles of beer/wine/liquor in their house, so why not 40 joints. this is not “outrageous.” people need to be allowed to grow their own and have the option to purchase from a vendor. government can tax the sale just like they do cigs and alcohol. it is not that difficult.

    • sage says:

      Some people seem unable and or unwilling to grasp these salient points.

    • Intrigued says:

      AMEN!!! Don’t tell Dunkley that though!

  11. whiplash says:

    Whoa, wasn’t everyone praising Dunkley the other day for being progressive.

    So good to see the real mike Dunkley stepping up. We all knew where his heart was, now we are clear.

    If your daddy ain’t a minister, welcome to the stop list!

    • campervan says:

      So long as he doesn’t start gay bashing and invoking God as his excuse like some Taliban cleric he gets the support of the true progressives unlike the opposition leader.

    • YADON says:

      Yup, got cancer ? here have some radiation for a couple hundred grand.

  12. mixitup says:

    The Minister said, “In the first instance, the Bill, as drafted, legalizes cannabis possession, handling and use and would do so without the benefit of necessary public input.”

    Without public input? LMAO!! Oh… now public input matters?

  13. Think... says:

    I just hope that this doesn’t become a political football while more people obtain convictions for possession of small amounts of cannabis. Clearly, the party that gets this done will gain numerous votes on the next election day. But hopefully, this doesn’t get drawn out into reinventing the wheel (research, debate, education, etc.)

    This PLP amendment doesn’t deal with the source of obtaining this weed. As it stands now, individuals can obtain this weed from an illegal source which does nothing to help the local economy by taxing it or making an income from it. this means the same illegal supplier will still be making all the money…which doesn’t seem right. Especially, when it could be controlled by the medical profession or from a private business that pays taxes to the govt. just my two cents…

    • Bermuda Male says:

      Agreed.

      If we are going to do it, let’s do it right the first time!

      In the meantime the judges should heed public opinion and apply the leniency if the current written law for all small possessions.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      Good point. What about the supplier? Saw something about the Colorado system. The grower is registered, at no small fee, & monitored 24/7. Cameras are located in the grow area & they are monitored by State Government people. The registered retailers are monitored. Of course the price reflects all of this supervision but the state is still projected to earn millions net through weed sales. I believe some of that money will be earmarked to pay for drug rehab.

      Perfect. The users pay for their own rehabilitation. Take note Bermuda. How much is spent on drug rehab programs here?

      • sage says:

        The extent to which authorities regulate herb does not reflect the fact that it is far safer than cigarettes and alcohol. This is residual hysteria, and a glance at Colorado’s tobacco regulations show a huge disparity, in fact the tobacco law was drafted under the assumption that the majority of tobacco retailers would, or do, comply with the ban on tobacco sale to minors. Unlike the large licensing, monitoring fees and taxes for herb, the law predictably does not require retailer licensing at all, or even similar provisions to control tobacco sales that have been enacted by other states. If a minor buys a cigarette it is a class 2 petty offence $100 fine no mention of repeat offences, and I wonder if it’s the minor who is fined when I read that “if a store is subjected to attempted tobacco purchases by minors, call the Liquor Enforcement Divisions Tobacco Enforcement Unit.” as if the retailers are the victims.

  14. O'Brien says:

    “This time, it comes as the PLP follows through with an election platform promise to decriminalise possession of cannabis.”

    How many times does the PLP need reminding that they did not win the election? It really does not appear to have sunk in 13 months later!

  15. Triangle Drifter says:

    Just like the gambling issue, get on with it. Talk has been going on for years. Even the US President admits that weed is no worse than alchohol. It is about moderation. Get on with whatever has to be done with the US Government.

    My understanding is that if you have a conviction the US Government puts you on the stop list. Well, if you have less than the legal maximum, you won’t be convicted. No record, no block. What is the problem? How does the Federal Government treat the State Governments which permit weed? Stop people from crossing state lines?

    It is not as simple as the PLP wants to propose but we are not reinventing the wheel either. There are plenty of places where the stuff has been legalised or decriminalised. Look at their legislation.

    The OBA has an awful lot on their plate. Like gaming this one should be fairly easy to deal with. The public consensus is in favour. Never mind the PLP noise.

  16. Thatkidatoxford says:

    [Apologies for bringing up a different topic]

    ‘The Minister said, “In the first instance, the Bill, as drafted, legalizes cannabis possession, handling and use and would do so without the benefit of necessary public input.’

    Necessary public input. Weren’t we supposed to have a referendum on casino gaming? It seems that public input is now conveniently necessary.

  17. Keepin' it Real...4Real! says:

    Until People WAKE UP!! and learn the truths and the things “THEY” don’t want you to know about, Bermuda will continue on a downward spiral for the POOR folk, while the wealthy will continue to live life as they feel…whether you believe it or not this so called “racism” that you all are so informed about is out of date, history,no longer valid,that was in the LAST MILLENNIUM…welcome to the NEW WORLD ORDER… the new racism…it is NOT about SKIN COLOR…it’s about your MONETARY worth…’tis a big game of Masters n Slaves(Rich n Poor)…as the world turns, so they say.

  18. Nuffin but da Truth says:

    gotta love Dunkley for calling out the plp!
    (peoples losing party).

  19. Rhonda Neil says:

    l

  20. Robert says:

    Doesn’t seem these two egomaniacal parties will ever agree on anything, and that is really sad. So sick of the dumb fighting and nothing getting done.

    • Hmmm says:

      The OBA are getting things done….an you know it. They produced a list proving that.

  21. Story Teller says:

    “However while they are working on those changes, we look forward to their support in Parliament as the PLP moves to make sure that all residents receive the same treatment as an the son of an OBA Minister, A PLP CANDIDATE and numerous other examples; a future without a criminal record for simple possession of cannabis.”

    Fixed it for ya PLP…

    Always divisive…at least you’re consistent

  22. Will says:

    Minister Dunkley just get on with it. Is there really any need to as you say have ‘research, public debate and education, refining policies and procedures’ when you promised that for gambling and look where we are now. (Note: I do support gambling, but using as an example). Second of all I do understand that you need these steps in place..but why can’t you just snap your fingers and decriminalise possession of small amounts for the sake of not having kids with criminal convictions. Nothing bad will ever come from decriminalisation compared to the severity of a criminal conviction. As it stands right now the only danger associated with marijuana is getting caught.

  23. more than enough says:

    what about the minister of health?
    we are talking about medicine here

  24. whoeveriwannabe says:

    Clearly this is turning into a black vs white issue Plp vs Oba rather than the topic at hand “legalizing weed”. All I can say is OBA have fun while it last as Bermuda has woken up only a fool would vote OBA back in after this mess. And Plp continues to make “The People” happy. Peoples party. Stop lying to the youth about Marijuana being a gateway drug and fill them in on why the lie was made from jump. its all in the money (the root of all evil) almost like a wolf in sheeps clothing and the marijuana is more like a sheep in wolves clothing. Go figure! get wise Bermuda leave race out of it and start thinking realistic nomtter the race or the political party we all need marijuana the life saving medicine

  25. more than enough says:

    the average tobacco cigarette contains 1/2 gram of tobacco.
    what is outrageous, is that there are no restrictions on the amounts of this poison. yet, you insist on trying to restrict and regulate a plant, which is a medicine, a food, a fiber (to name a few of the many uses).
    all because, some enjoy the psycho-active qualities produced by the same.?talk about irresponsible, reckless and not thought through….
    legalize it, with an urgency of now

    • sage says:

      Carton holds 200 cigarettes (i think) and there are no legal limits for any amount, you can order a full container, no one cares, alcohol same thing and both can cause DEATH from extended use or overdose(raw nicotine in the case of cigarettes). Remember the case of the “child ate marijuana cookie”on the first day of legalization in Co.? You know why there have been no subsequent reports? The child is perfectly fine, doesn’t make for sensational headlines, like the insignificant fact that Obama is urging legalization.

  26. whoeveriwannabe says:

    SINCE WHEN DOES THE NATIONAL SECURITY MINISTER HAVE SO MUCH TO SAY IN A HEALTH MATTER? DOES OBA HAVE A HEALTH MINISTER? WHATS THE HEALTH MINISTER HAVE TO SAY? OR DOES HE EVEN HAVE KNOWLEDGE ON ANYTHING TO DO WITH HEALTH OR MAYBE JUST A PUPPET DUNKLEY SEEMS AS IF HE IS THE MINISTER OF EVERYTHING WHEN IT COMES TO THE OBA, THE PREMIER PROBABLY DOSENT EVEN KNOW THIS IS A DISCUSSION.

  27. more than enough says:

    being as it would take approximately 1500 lbs to overdose on cannabis,i suggest anything below this amount, should be considered safe to possess…
    if there must be regulations, lets be reasonable.

  28. Come Correct says:

    Last time I bought 20 grams was on the 31st of Nevuary in 19wherethef***didtheypullthis numberfrom?! Weed is sold as 1, 2, 3.5, 7 and 28 grams for personal use. You’re -6, 1, or 8 grams short of not being an idiot. Make it an even Oz and be done with it. If I have 20.45678grams am I now up for intent to supply? Idiots!

  29. Picture this... says:

    De Man rolls up on the corner and sees de yuf smoking a little cedar bark in papers. De Man jumps out de car and grabs de yut. De yut says I’m smoking cedar bark. De Man lets him go.

    Not sure if cedar bark is good for you to be smoking but it has a pungent smell when burning or not and has many other positive uses.

    Can someone try and rationally explain what is different if you replace weed with cedar bark? It is the only plant in the Western Hemisphere that is illegal!

  30. Balanced Facts says:

    If the PLP think that a one and half page Bill really addresses this issue then someone was definitely high when they wrote it! Straight up, Dunkley has it right, where do you buy the legal 19 grams proposed? From the local drug dealer??? NOT SMART PLP…your lawyers need to do some work on Foreign Legislative structure and how they have legalized or de-crimilized weed! Bermuda will need buy in from the U.S etc. Importation, cultivation (thats where you start as A-Pettingil said) and supply are all still illegal! So Daniels wants to make people buying weed accessories to these offenses??? Really not well thought out is it???? Great for Gang business though, they will start packaging and selling in pokes of 19 grams….well done PLP, well done…left hand side is it????LOL

  31. Bermuda Male says:

    The proposed amendment simply states that it is not illegal to carry less than 20 grams.

    It does not state that the police officer is mandated to confiscate the weed when found.

    Thus it is essentially legalization.

    Something I am not against at all.

    But a 1.5 page bill is not sufficient to cover this issue.

    Why are some so against to ensure that the proper legislation is in place before heading down this path.

    If anything this proposed bill is a knee jerk reaction that has not been thought through.

  32. Soooooo says:

    I said on the original post of the proposed act “that it needed to go back to the drawing board” and gave a couple of quick reasons… Well, after sleeping on it, Mr Daniels should maybe think more about what he has written. All he is doing with this quickly thrown together amendment is to encourage acts that will still be illegal under the Misuse of Drugs Act.

    So, it’s ok to possess under 20 grams, where prey tell did you get this? It’s still illegal to sell, purchase, import and cultivate! Therefor to possess the person HAD to commit one of these offenses.

    If we are going to legalize weed (and accociated products) then it needs to be done right. Amendments need to be made to change police powers in accordance. Lke alcohol and cigarettes this should be a revenue stream for government.

    • sage says:

      Why should people who successive governments have vilified, demonized, marginalized, discriminated against, stereotyped,and have arrested and imprisoned, broken up families, wiped out finances, denied transplants,financial aid, scholarships and employment wrongfully for decades be the ones to bail their a$$&$ out now they are broke. The war on drugs having singlehandedly wasted billions. They can get payroll (income) tax from all the jobs which would be created, to augment the huge savings, and allow this evolving industry be a form of stimulus for those they have promised to not leave behind. It should be done right, not where the regulations are stricter than for more harmful legal drugs.

  33. foolishness says:

    Its amazing how many people are against the marijuana plant.. I know it can’t be because of the so called harmful effects because cigarettes have far more toxic chemicals than marijuana. But yet I don’t hear no one lobbying to take cigarettes off the market… So u can’t tell me its because of the effects that marijuana has on the body…all this false propaganda on such a useful plant has lead the majority of individuals to believe that it is such a bad plant… ITS ONLY GRASS… EDUCATE YOURSELF….

    • Barracuda says:

      Just a question, how many Bermudians roll cigarette with their joint?
      If weed becomes legal or decriminalized will people stop this practice?

      • Sara says:

        Why dos it matter? If they want to roll it with cigarette then so be it. Just like the man or women that buys their pack of cigs day in and day out with no hassle.

      • Keepin' it Real...4Real! says:

        i got you on your question, which i think sara overlooked…if the herb is made legal, many will stop the dangerous practice of smoking tobacco…and i dont think that Phillip Morris and others would appreciate their loss in revenue.

      • Betty Dump says:

        Of course they would… they only do it because of the overinflated prices due to illegality…

  34. X man says:

    The Headlines says – Reckless and not thought though!
    Mr.Dunkley who’s running the Country – OBA or the PLP – because your acting like what ever the PLP says scares you.’
    This also show’s the OBA’s Fear of the PLP’ – It’s like every time the Opposition say’s something the OBA gets rattled up.
    Who’s running this Island anyway.

    • Keepin' it Real...4Real! says:

      Neither Political Party is “running” this country. Bermuda is not owned by the OBA or the PLP…the elected officials that we the people vote for are really just individuals that we feel are capable of handling our international affairs…why are we negotiating with the Govt…”we” the people are the political figures EMPLOYER…we the people have views and thoughts on what we want in our country and the elected officials job is to bring that in to fruition if at all possible…anything other than that i would call a Dictatorship. So i say to you all out there…PLP forget about being the controlling factor , you have proven yourselves not worthy in that sector BUT! stay where you are as the OPPOSITION…as the thorn in the side of the OBA, keeping them in check for the peoples you care so much about …that is your forte, your niche…be proud of that. Oh well… too much to say but can’t be here all day.

  35. Starting point says:

    and as an outsider a few arguments that have been posted in these forums I tend to disagree with:

    Economic benefits….lol the market is too small, very few will benefit financially. The government won’t as if they regulate it people will sell illegally because they do not understand the process for licensing or want to pay the tax, therefor they will still sell illegally. BTW even if the market was good, then most likely a well off business owner would buy the land, market and produce it with a solid business plan and the rest of you would not make a dime off of marijuana.

    Medical – I believe the benefits are there for pain reduction, quality of life etc. It is not a cure for anything to be honest, there are some cases of great benefit but they are isolated (btw – studies on rats are lol). Unfortunately i would estimate less than 1% of people calling for legalization in Bermuda want it for medical reasons.

    Tourism – again, some will benefit but then you will have tourists who think they can ‘blaze’ on the beaches etc.This would turn away far more repeat visitors then encourage new ones and hurt tourism. I do think that a cruse ship passenger for example with a small amount for medical reasons should be given a pass. Same with Bermudians. Understand that Amsterdam is a backpacking tourist destination, not luxury – completely different tourist market so please do not draw parallels. I have been there FYI and actually the worst part of the place was the front strip from the train station, once I got past the drug shops, cafes and red light the place was awesome.

    The god argument about plants etc…. LOL Oleander is a plant, that leaf is poison I believe, based on the God argument you should be eating that. It is best to leave religion out of the debate process as religion is not a universal truth, some believe some don’t so you will never gain consensus. Morals and values are not religion despite faiths claim to them.

    I support decriminalization not legalization myself, we already have alcohol and smoking to challenge our young people, the logic to add another because is it just the same seems foolish to me. At the same time, someone making a mistake should not suffer their whole life for it.

    Just my opinions of course, it is interesting to read others. I would caution though that as an outsider it appears that you (posters here) tend to not focus on anything but these two political parties, this will be your downfall imo. There seems to be more time yelling at each other from OBA to PLP, i fear you might not be at a level of sophistication or community to even handle a law like this.

  36. zzzzz says:

    I can’t be bothered to read all the above bickering comments between the PLP and OBA faithful, however I have this to say:

    Cannabis is illegal in Bermuda. If you are caught with the stuff it is highly likely your name will end up on the stop list. This is a fact and every Bermudian knows this. It is not a surprise for anybody!

    Having cannabis in your position and possibly ending up on the stop list is therefore a calculated risk that people take. If you want to be able to travel to the USA freely, don’t carry cannabis. Couldn’t be simpler.

    The above said, I have no problem with the stuff or legalising it – I just think it is ridiculous to complain about the ramifications when they are so well known and you have nobody but yourself to blame.

    • sage says:

      It’s not just herb that gets you on the “list”, any criminal offense involving ” moral turpitude” (evil, depravity) qualifies, except of course, conveniently, a DUI for alcohol, which certainly fits the definition of moral turpitude better than merely possessing a “small amount of herb, for personal use.” Our “stop list’ is more effective at weeding out herb smokers than the terror “watch list” has been at stopping terrorists, when the “underwear bomber” boarded his flight , he was able to do so because being flagged as a potential suicide bomber (to the CIA by his father,prior) as well as being on the “watch” (as opposed to “stop”) list wasn’t grounds enough to deny him entry to the plane, thankfully he was thwarted.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      If there is a set allowable amount that you won’t be prosecuted for how will you have a record. If you don’t have a record how will you be put on any US stop list?

      Please explain.

      • sage says:

        Why should someone be prosecuted for any amount, large or small, in the first place?

  37. clearasmud says:

    This draft Act is Well intentioned but short sighted! Today high school students are in school past 18 which means it would be possible that the 18+ year old will be able to bring drugs to school because its 19grams and not 20 grams!

    • sage says:

      Schools don’t allow cigarettes or alcohol (which are fully legalized for recreational use for 18+) on the property (except maybe for principals and teachers) and they wouldn’t allow students to possess herb either even if it was legalized.

      • Sara says:

        Exactly what I was going to say. Why do people act like marijuana would be treated any differently than alcohol or cigs? All the same rules would apply. If your workers can’t show up to the job drunk, then they can’t show up stoned. Is this simple enough for everyone?

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      You have a very fitting screen name. If cigarettes & alcohol are not allowed on school property by students, why in the world would weed be permitted?

      Simple common sense.

  38. Tlew says:

    Just another political football. The real implications and impact on the workforce hasn’t been felt, or studied. As an employer of blue collar workers, how do you police a policy against the use of Substances if suddenly it’s ok to carry?
    Wow! It goes to show that the average person can’t think any further than their paycheck. The costs of services are already too high in BDA, we already have an apathetic workforce. Add the “weed of wisdom” and you have another excuse for employers to hire foreign help to get the job done.
    We’ll done OBA for trying to slow this down a little to make sure ALL angles are well thought out before proceeding to collaborate on this issue.

    • Betty Dump says:

      How do you police a policy against the use of Substances if suddenly it’s ok to carry? What an asinine statement. If you truly are an employer, you are not showing any intelligence. How do you police alcohol use on the job since it’s “ok to carry”?

    • Keepin' it Real...4Real! says:

      you police it by work performance…whether high or not,if he ain’t cuttin’ it then get crackin’

    • tlew says:

      If its illegal, but decriminalized, how did it get into the hands of the end user? Magic weed fairy? Dumb.

      Common sense not so common anymore.

      Slow it down Dunkley. When the horse is out of the stable, its hard to put it back in. Make sure WHEN it happens, policy is in place to police it.

  39. aceboy says:

    This appears to be a good time to repeat my comment in the article from yesterday when the PLP held their press conference:

    This is a good idea, but based on the history of the PLP’s ability to draft laws it is more than likely fatally flawed.

    SNAP!

  40. more than enough says:

    decriminalization is naive at best and dangerous at worst.
    this misconceived approach is outrageous, as it supports both the illegal trade and the continuing saga of the failed drug war…very similar to what is happening now…jugglers$ smugglers$ gang$ police$ customs$ judges$ lawyers$ counselors$ politicians$ etc…sounds like a ‘friends and family’ package deal to me…sneaky buggers, i can see whasup
    free up the herb- remove all laws against cannabis immediately… save some money,and put your time and resources into fighting something that actually causes harm ie the war on drugs and more specifically this steaming dung pile of paperwork being considered as law.

    amend

  41. Nicole says:

    I am personally for the decriminalization of marijuana. But, for Mr. Daniels to prepare draft amendment legislation without consulting necessary stakeholders, considering all policy issues and circulating to members of the bar for their comments is irresponsible. Sounds like cart before the horse. There is a process to doing this.

    • Indepedent says:

      @ Nicole,

      So you must feel the same way abouting gambling? Cart before the horse?

      • Nicole says:

        I feel the same way about gambling. If they said they were going to put it to the people they should have done so. However, probably for my personal beliefs, I feel more strongly about the decriminalization of marijuana than the gambling issue. I feel it was just a matter of time re gambling. I don’t belive that gambling will cure our woes and I do belive that there are those who will not invest in Bermuda without gambling on the table (hence the Govts rush on this issue). And I hope the legislation and policy effects will be as well thought out as they should be on the marijuana issue. Once can hope.

  42. jt says:

    Reckless and not thought through – sums up alot of PLP decision making.

    Get it legalized. Do it right the first time.

  43. more than enough says:

    this is the same place of origin of the rum runners, is it not..bermudians designed, and built boats that could outrun all others, to secure our success in this illegal industry. despite the prohibition in the usa…
    look at how it accepted by both now.
    if we could only stop bowing and scraping for the usa’s acceptance,(who btw are already way ahead of us) we would have a real chance to get a jump on them in this issue, or have we lost the ‘spirit of bermuda’
    we were not afraid then, and we should not be afraid now.
    it is inevitable, marijuana will be legal, and free from any, and all legal restrictions, around the world.
    why wait for tomorrow to do what can be done today?

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      Your history is way off. Bermuda had nothing to do with prohibition.

      Bermuda built fast ships to outrun Union blockade ships in the Civil War. Goods to & from the South were transhipped here. Bermuda, particularly the ships & crews made out very well during this time.

      • Indepedent says:

        @ Triangle drifter,

        If you know your history, what were they running? I know, do you?

      • Sara says:

        The Civil War was from 1860-1865. Prohibition was from 1920-1933 in the And Bermuda certainly had something to do with prohibition. The Historical Dictionary of the U.S. Maritime Industry says that “Rum runners operated out of Bahamas, Bermuda, Cuba, Jamaica, St.Pierre et Miquelon, and even as far away as Europe.” So maybe you need to re-check your facts.

  44. Just Wondering says:

    Sorry being really lazy here but how would this effect high risk zones?

    for example, the bill is passed as is, i’m a dealer and i’m outside a school looking to get a younger client base. The police happen along and ‘randomly’ search me, finding 19 grams on me. Is there a punishment or no?

    I am personally for the decriminalization & legalization of marijuana but feel that there need to be some very strict rules in place for it.

    • sage says:

      Why do high risk zones, or increased penalty areas, only exist for drug offenders and not murderers, rapists etc.? One man who had his murder sentence reduced the other day, shot the guy five feet from the church (increased penalty zone) all the outcry no one pointed this out. Some poor guy whose place may lie within 200 yards of these zones gets double the normal penalties for his personal supply while the guys who shoots a man to death in cold blood practically on church property gets reduction, very smart .Why should rules be ‘very strict” when rules for very harmful legal drugs are not. Shouldn’t the rules reflect the real potential for harm, rather than unfounded bias?

      • Just Wondering says:

        Okay, bare with me as i try answer you as clearly as i can.

        I did high risk zones because they are part of the already existing legislation, and as I said in my first post ‘for example, the bill is passed as is, ….” i want to know how this bill that the PLP has that they are planning to ‘put forward next month’ will effect theses zones in the example that i gave.

        I am not talking about all the other things you mentioned (murder,rape,shootings) because they have nothing to do with this topic which is weed and the bill of the PLP and the response by the Minister.

        Strict rules and punishments if legalisation happen are need to avoid people abusing the systems, to be deterrents against people doing things that might harm others. For example if i have a license to sell weed there should be laws/rules on the quality of the product and purity of it. So that if it found that i am selling a taint product i.e. weed laced with cocaine not only would i lose my license but face high fines and jail time. Why? to discourage people from doing after me and to protect the consumer.

        What legal drugs are you talking about? you will need to give examples of what you mean. after all most legal drugs go through a strict (there that word again) review process, which still fails sometime, and have strict guide-lines on their use.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      I cannot be 100% sure but I would like to think that you, as a street dealer would be prosecuted wherever you are. I would think that to retail weed you will have to be licensed to sell & operating out of a licensed premises selling authorized packaged product grown in a licensed & controlled area.

      If you are an unlicensed grower, wholesaler or retailer, you are still fair game for the courts which I hope would deal with you very severely.

      • Just Wondering says:

        Whole i see your point and i think that off we legalise weed then you have a very good point but you missed mine, from what i read in the other article “The bill calls for the “removal of all penal controls and criminal sanctions in relation to the possession and handling of cannabis and/or cannabis resin, where the weight of same does not exceed 20 grams [0.7oz]…”

        so there is no licences or any thing, so when the police in my example go “what this ” what stopping me from going “It is for my personal use.” what happens then? do i walk away, or what?

      • sage says:

        I hope you drift deep enough into the triangle that we are rid of you.

        • Triangle Drifter says:

          A personal attack is very easy but do you actually have a response?

  45. Betty Trump says:

    Well done PLP, Well done, your on a high level on this one….it is killing the diehards or the UBPoba and MPs and look at the look on Dunkley face….wow speaks a thousand words….LOL…..

    Keep pressing on…keep doing the work of the people….L am loving it more each day !!

    • Terry says:

      How much do they pay you Betty.

      • Silly says:

        Not enough to go to school to learn how to spell, use proper grammar and construct a coherent sentence.

        • Anbu says:

          Honestly guys if the plp were against it, betty would be too. She does what they tell her to do lol. Ashfield tried to get the ball rolling years ago and they shot him down. They want credit for it so they can stand a better chance at the next polling station. This will never happen so dont hold your breath anyone.

          • Sara says:

            Poor Ashfield, one of the few in the PLP that stayed humble and truly cared about his constituents and they(PLP)tossed him to the curb. I truly wish he could have ran as an independent or OBA as he was in touch with the people. He had the b@lls to bring this subject up and the PLP did NOTHING.

  46. Keepin' it Real...4Real! says:

    My Opinion and my opinion only: there’s a lot of fussing and fighting about medicinal usage…travel advantages…trying to find ways of distributing or controlling its flow…how to tax it(because you cannot tax organic properties,hence the illegalities). Now, if you need it for medicine , we now know that it can be prescribed, so erase that from your petition or arguement…travel advantages is really a luxury, not really convincing if i was on a panel of decision makers. Other than those two reasons brought forth i haven’t heard anything else really audible…just a lot of white noise. I’m sort of astounded that i haven’t heard about the terrorism that it has procured in the past few years…Gangs,Guns n Ganja…a very informative video i might add…but i see it like this …make it legal to grow 6 plants for personal use, automatically reducing if not eliminating smuggling(then the boys on border patrol can concentrate on the coke n heron along with the designer drugs that are readily available). This is where i see a problem …Do not let the govt. run things…nature and bureaucracy does not mix…A Billion dollar textile…why let the govt. collect…if the people could make their own money they wouldn’t mind paying their taxes… less money needed by the Govt.to assist the many on Welfare… if the Govt. controls it only a few will reap its benefits…you will stay poor and taxes will still soar. It should be regulated by laws on where you can and cannot smoke same as where you can and cannot drink alcohol. I think it would be cool to stop by your favorite vegetable vendor for some fresh veggies and a stalk of sensimilla…im sure they’d welcome a boost in profits too. Please take the Criminal element out of it before the next father, son, brother, nephew, cousin or friends murder takes place if you are at all concerned about we the people. You will see a change.

  47. Interesting says:

    Hahahaha. The PLP are funny.

    They say no talk is necessary and pass their 2 paragraph bill.

    However, in November 2013 the current Shadow Minister stated the following:

    - Mr. Burt said: “I don’t agree with legalization, but decriminalization has worked in other countries.

    - He added that any decriminalization would bring its “own set of problems” and so the issue needed “a full debate to consider all the options”.

    As this was only approximately 2 months ago, can the PLP please provide the results of their comprehensive research and what “set of problems” they identified that would come with decriminalization?

    Also, I have seen a lot of Town Hall meetings held by the PLP. But not one was designed to facilitate a “full debate to consider all the options” pertaining to decriminalization.

    But all of a sudden their 2 paragraph bill s sufficient to address these “set of problems” and now a “full debate” isn’t necessary?

  48. more than enough says:

    ganja debate tops bernews comment list
    as the government, and opposition members shuffle into position, and try to figure out where they want to stand on this issue.
    with a view of scoring political points (of course), and maybe some $$$,they remain in confusion…refusing to align with the global movement taking place,in regards to marijuana – medical or otherwise.
    the attempts made so far, are, as weak as to be expected…
    the educated few, continue to carry the ‘legalize it’ banner, through the onslaught of lies, and falsehood, being heaped upon them, by those many uneducated(about marijuana,that is, in case you were wondering)
    please stay tuned for much more on this very important issue
    ya might just learn supmn!(something)

  49. Common Sense says:

    Whether you are OBA or PLP, the fact of the matter is that in this case Mr. Dunkley is right. I am all for the decriminalization and ultimately legalization of marijuana. However, there is more to it than just the three amendments the PLP drafted. There are areas that need to be looked at and changed along with those they have addressed, such as: “production, sale, supply, and conditions of use.” These are critical to making this change work for Bermuda.

  50. more than enough says:

    common sense should tell you, that laws restricting the usage of a harmless, and arguably beneficial plant, are ridiculous.
    higher reasoning will tell you, that the multi-faceted marijuana plant is far to complex, even in only the a-fore mentioned areas of production, sale, supply, and conditions of use, for the government to legislate.never mind, to manage…
    therefore, the only option, is to legalize, removing the subject from our esteemed politicians already full plates.as they have little, or no knowledge of this particular plant and its uses.
    coupled with little or no concern, or compassion, for those of us desirous of making this an acceptable part of life on earth
    i think that we should move forward on this immediately,
    trusting in our own, responsible bermudian adults, to do the right thing, with this over-vilified plant.

  51. azillionjunkies says:

    we wanna grow cannabis like broccoli, not 20 grams. that’s still kicking in Bermudians doors, and more selective prosecution of poor people. cannabis is on bermudas flag and coat of arms. those tight ropes holing up the mast in the shipwreck are cannabis. take cannabis out of the misuse of drugs act.

  52. azillionjunkies says:

    take cannabis out of the misuse of drugs act. because of illegal cannabis the medical community has been shamed and discredited lately. illegal cannabis has repeatedly exposed govts as the 2 faced liars they are. illegal cannabis is corruption. illegal cannabis is selective prosecution ,persecution and character assassination of the politically poor. illegal cannabis casts a pall of scumbaggery over all of us in Bermuda. legalize cultivation so the Bermudian people can have a boom too. we know the rich want casinos to launder their money from selling tush dirtweed here.