Just days after cannabis was legalised in Colorado and Washington states, regulation of weed became a new hot issue in Bulgaria, after two fundamentally different poll results were published.
The National Centre for Public Opinion Research conducted a poll among 1000 adults from 86 communities, concluding that 81% of Bulgarians are opposed to the legalisation of marijuana. At the same time one of the most popular Bulgarian television stations took its own poll, and reached a completely different conclusion. Their figures indicate that 85.65% of those questioned support the legalisation of cannabis.
The truth is probably somewhere between what the government and the poll it commissioned claims. On one hand, it seems likely that the evidence-based information available online for those who speak foreign languages does not reach the majority of Bulgarian society. On the other hand, the older population, who used to live under communist rule, tends to connect drugs with crime and see them as a sign of “modern social decline”. Also, the majority of the population take their information from newspapers and television, which tend to only cover the criminal aspect of drug-use; a perfect way to strengthen stigma against people using drugs.
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