By Robin Lloyd - Open Democracy

Survivors and victims of the War on Drugs are travelling from Honduras in a caravan for peace, life and justice to present their case  to UNGASS 11 next week.

I first smoked marijuana when I was thirty years old. I found it to be more fun than alcohol.  And more spiritual.  It reminded me why I became a Quaker. It helped me see the inner light in people.

The next realization was that it was insane to make this simple plant illegal.  In reading books on the subject I learned a surprising fact: the legal prohibition of cannabis, coca and poppy plants is determined at the highest level, not by God, since after all it is reported that Jesus used a cannabis extract in healing, but by the UN’s Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961.  In 1970, Richard Nixon signed the legislation implementing national prohibition in compliance with the Convention: the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act.

So just to make that clear, US drug policy is determined by a United Nations Convention.

A potentially momentous reconsideration of that Convention will take place next week in New York City at the second United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs (UNGASS).

Olmyra Morales, secretary to the Small Coca Farmers Cooperative, Colombia

Olmyra Morales, secretary to the Small Coca Farmers Cooperative, Colombia - Open Democracy

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Thumbnail: Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)