december 2021 – goodnews editorial

legalize it II

The Celts already cultivated Cannabis in our latitudes, and it experienced a heyday in the 17th century, when European ships sailed the seven seas with their hemp riggings, bringing new stimulants to Europe. Due to the burgeoning chemical industry, cannabis cultivation lost importance. After the Second World War there was some increase, but as of 1982 the cultivation of cannabis was prohibited in Germany, until 1996, when hemp could be grown again as an agricultural crop. As a stimulant, cannabis experienced certain restrictions early on and remained illegal. This is about to change, as the new German coalition has taken up the cause of decriminalsing hemp, hoping that the introduction of controlled dispensing of cannabis to adults for the purpose of consumption, in licensed stores, will bring an economic upswing. Cannabis was already approved as a medicine in Germany in 2016, and it is also legal as such in Austria. There, cultivation is only punishable if one wants to obtain an ‘addictive substance’ from it. Anyone can plant hemp if the plants do not sprout female flowers containing THC. Otherwise, cultivation, processing, acquisition, possession, consumption, passing on and transport are still punishable. Germany intends to bet on a great variety of cannabis products as well, as witnessed in Switzerland in the nineties not only around the still fashionable hemp beer, hemp clothing or hemp bubble bath, but on hemp paper(s), hemp as insulating construction material, as sweets or lollipops, hemp seeds, hemp tea or hemp cookies. Hemp was on everyone’s lips, but the corresponding elections were negative seeing the proponents wanted to achieve too much at once, and the range of hemp products narrowed again. The time of cannabis as a stimulant had obviously not yet come. In the fall, we will find out whether this will change in Germany. In Austria, there is also a coalition of the willing regarding the legalisation of cannabis; CBD-containing cannabis is just as popular as in Switzerland and Germany, but whether Austria will follow Germany’s example remains to be seen. For older consumers it doesn’t make that much of a difference.
I wish you happy holidays – with or without cannabis.

Susanne G. Seiler

Our Lady of Outer Space

Reach down for the sun, reach down
for the stars, reach deeper for the secret
places of the body of her the stars adorn.
You are lost and found in her embrace.
There is nowhere else for you to fall and
no escaping from her love for she is
black and pulsating source,
her million nipples
nurse all life,
her jeweled ardent body
twines around you always
and there is no place
to go but

Arlen Riley Wilson

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