Tory MP Crispin Blunt 'outs himself' as popper user

(37 Posts)
LurkingHusband Wed 20-Jan-16 16:58:24

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-35363865

A Conservative MP has told the House of Commons he is a user of the popper recreational drug and a ban on its supply would be "fantastically stupid".
Ex-minister Crispin Blunt said users of the drug were "astonished" by talk of a ban and respect for the law "would fly out of the window" if it happened.

(contd)

whatdoIget Wed 20-Jan-16 17:05:04

Fair enough. No point criminalising people for recreational drug use, imo. He's brave to admit his usage publicly.

ppeatfruit Thu 21-Jan-16 10:32:28

"Respect for the law" !!!!!!!! Really!!!!!! A law that thinks getting ratarsed on vodka is ok and not allowing anyone to supply a bit of medicinal marijuana. DOH

ppeatfruit Thu 21-Jan-16 10:33:40

Oh and btw I don't use either of the above but IMO we need a rational law.

MephistophelesApprentice Thu 21-Jan-16 11:20:19

Typical (c)onservative, only against banning things when it might effect them.

SlightlyJaded Thu 21-Jan-16 11:30:48

The law, as it currently stands, is a nonsense. I think Crispin Blunt has been brave - possibly foolish - but brave to make a stand.

The law doesn't work. It never has. Decriminalising recreational use of certain substances, taxing them and rigorously testing them accordingly makes complete sense.

As an example: when I was in my 20's - it was all about weed, ecstasy and cocaine. The ecstasy was a new thing which meant that whilst initially it was 'clean' because people didn't know how to synthesise it, within a few years, rogue chemists/dealers started churning out fuck knows what in the name of 'E' and 'dropping a pill' became a fairly scary/russian roulettey gamble. Had it been decriminalised and subject to the same kind of scrutiny as a legal drug, this would not have happened. Onsite testing (as they have in nightclubs in Holland) would prevent people from taking anything that wasn't MDMA and lives would be saved.

I don't take drugs now and haven't taken anything recreationally for years. But I live in London and I have DC and I would be blinkered to think that they will never be offered that opportunity and I know that no matter how open I am with them, how clearly I spell out the dangers, they will make up their own minds. And the thing I fear the most are the so called 'legal highs'. These are the things that make my blood run cold and were the government to take a less hysterical approach to some of the other substances, the legal high would have far less appeal.

I am glad that Crispin Blunt has spoken up. Good for him.

LurkingHusband Thu 21-Jan-16 12:19:16

When I first read this, there was a sense of the biter bit. However, by raising the subject, Blunt is simply highlighting the hole below the waterline that has always existed in UK drug legislation. And that is the fallacy that making drugs illegal reduces the urge for people to dabble.

Poppers have been legal since whenever. I have been offered them on occasion in the 80s and 90s and declined each time. I simply didn't want to try them legal or not. At the same time I was smoking copious quantities of cannabis because I wanted to regardless of the illegality.

The key plank of the illegality of certain drugs (with alcohol and tobacco carefully ring-fenced) is it supposed to signal that something is dangerous ...

Anyway, successive governments have demonstrated they have no intention of working towards a rational drugs policy, just as successive generations of citizens have shown the government exactly what they think of their idiocy.

The shame of it all, is that the 1971 Misuse of Drugs act is actually an incredibly well thought out and carefully written piece of legislation (back in the days when such things were to be aspired to). However successive generations of Home Secretaries playing to the gallery have devalued it to nothing.

Meanwhile, Colorado is raising millions of dollars from legal marijuana.

www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/sep/21/colorado-marijuana-tax-revenues-2015

I wonder what services people are happy are being cut, so we can continue the War On Drugs (c)? Although, interestingly, things seem to self-balancing anyway. You can't ramp up the War On Terror (c) whilst cutting police resources and expect things to continue as is.

Lot of people applauding Blunt. I disagree. He's a hypocrite who is only serving himself, and who gave no regard to his constituents views on other substances, and would have been quite happy for them to continue to be penalised for their choices whilst he continued his whiffle life with his drug of choice still legal. Generally I am a libertarian. But in this case, I hope poppers are banned (by the way, what is their "benefit" ? Remember marijuana has "no benefit" which is one reason why it's banned) and he can get to live like a sizeable minority of his constituents, abiding by a law he is suffering under. Or he can live like another sizeable minority of his constituents, and break a law he believes is stupid (he said it would be) with all the risk that entails.

Luckily, unlike anyone with a real job, criminal convictions are no bar to remaining (or becoming) an MP. In fact, if you look at how many MPs do have criminal records, you might think it was obligatory.

GnocchiGnocchiWhosThere Thu 21-Jan-16 12:41:54

"I use poppers. I out myself as a user of poppers. I am astonished to find it (the government) is proposing it to be banned and frankly so would many other gay men."

Am I being really naïve? What has popper use got to do with being a gay man?

Merrow Thu 21-Jan-16 12:55:29

They're a muscle relaxant, so often used before anal sex - definitely pretty common among the gay men I know

MephistophelesApprentice Thu 21-Jan-16 13:03:50

Am I being really naïve? What has popper use got to do with being a gay man?

In addition to a short term rushy buzz, it relaxes sphincter muscles.

GnocchiGnocchiWhosThere Thu 21-Jan-16 13:31:16

Oh! I'd never heard that before!

TheExtraGuineaPig Thu 21-Jan-16 13:36:07

I don't think it matters to most people if poppers are legal or not but I do object to Crispin's Blunt reasoning. It has nothing to do with a sensible or evidence based drugs policy and was quite a bizarre argument - "I like them so you can't ban them". I'm sure there are a few other drugs certain MPs could apply that logic to but that's not how it works.

LurkingHusband Thu 21-Jan-16 14:33:20

a sensible or evidence based drugs policy

People in the UK wouldn't recognise that if it was paraded in with fireworks in the New Year.

Remember kids. You can prove anything you like with facts.

MephistophelesApprentice Thu 21-Jan-16 15:24:49

People in the UK wouldn't recognise that if it was paraded in with fireworks in the New Year.

You might be surprised.

Out of morbid curiosity I checked the comments on a Daily Mail "all drugs are bad and this tiny anecdotal example is why" article. I then checked every other one I could find to verify, but it certainly appears as if the majority of readers agree with "legalise, regulate, tax and educate" for most drugs short of heroin.

There are massive rifts between what the public want and what the political/media class think we should want.

ppeatfruit Thu 21-Jan-16 15:27:28

Crispin Cxxx should start a campaign to ban alcohol in the H Of C apparently the bill for it every year is many many many thousands of pounds, that would save some of the taxpayers' money (sorry no link to the correct amount).

Just heard an item on the radio about the 'poppers' they're not as bad as alcohol but have nasty side effects for some people.

LurkingHusband Thu 21-Jan-16 16:20:08

Just heard an item on the radio about the 'poppers' they're not as bad as alcohol but have nasty side effects for some people.

Who cares ? What business is it of yours, mine or (and especially the governments) what people choose to put into their body. Bearing in mind little things like:

Foxgloves are poisonous.
There's enough nicotine in a cigarette to kill a child.
1 litre of scotch is enough to kill an adult.
Walking in rush hour city traffic is like smoking a small cigar.
Any half competent chemist could take out a minibus of people with what's found in most bathrooms.

As soon as the state starts to stick its nose into peoples business - especially when that business is in private and hurting nobody but themselves then we need to be very careful.

The "War on Drugs" (c) was not, is not, and will never be anything to do with peoples health or happiness. It's everything to do with using the machinery of state to try to enforce somebody elses moral code.

If the state were really serious about wanting to "save lives" it could start by banning cars - the cause of 3,000 deaths a year. Failing that, it could ban alcohol - cause of 8416 deaths in the UK in 2013 (deaths due to all illegal drugs in 2013 = 1,957).

Or, the Grandaddy of them all, tobacco related deaths (c. 100,000 every year).

So what's banned and what's not has nothing to do with logic, science or reason, and everything to do with the fact that (revenue raising) drugs are "good" and untaxed drugs are "bad".

Chatting with MrsLH yesterday, and I suspect the future will see the public leading the way (by behaviour) and the legislators having to catch up. With austerity giving a helping hand. In my own city already, the police are starting to warn that "crime is changing".

There's also a nasty streak of paternalism about banning anything - it's very much "is this a book you would like your wife or servants to read" type of attitude.

By all means ban/control trade in drugs (one of the states roles is to regulate trade to promote a healthy economy). But it's ridiculous that I can (and do) brew enough beer to flatten a touring theatre company, but plant a hemp seed, and it's chokey for me.

ppeatfruit Thu 21-Jan-16 16:27:39

Oh yes I agree, in my garden last year we had opium poppies, just literally appear, if a neighbour had felt unpleasant enough we could've been put in chokey (we did nothing with them btw.).

I love the true story that the reason alcohol wasn't banned was because the whiskey manufacturers were among the committee members who were discussing the issue in the early 1900s.

And of course anything that IS banned is catnip for rebellious yoof.

coffeetasteslikeshit Thu 21-Jan-16 16:29:23

Couldn't agree more OP. Have you seen this: www.ted.com/talks/ethan_nadelmann_why_we_need_to_end_the_war_on_drugs/transcript?language=en?

LurkingHusband Thu 21-Jan-16 17:03:08

Oh yes I agree, in my garden last year we had opium poppies, just literally appear, if a neighbour had felt unpleasant enough we could've been put in chokey (we did nothing with them btw.).

Why ? It's not illegal to grow them ? (Yet another idiocy in the "War on Drugs" (c)). You can grow acres of the things. As indeed, is being done in Didcot.

QueenStromba Thu 21-Jan-16 17:05:04

How did you know they were opium poppies? I just googled them and they look like bog standard poppies to me.

ppeatfruit Thu 21-Jan-16 17:11:01

I googled them, They were shaggy and pink, not standard looking at all, we're in France btw.

LurkingHusband Thu 21-Jan-16 17:12:05

How did you know they were opium poppies? I just googled them and they look like bog standard poppies to me.

from en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papaver_somniferum

It is also valuable for ornamental purposes, and has been known as the "common garden poppy", referencing all the group of poppy

Balance of probabilities, see a poppy in the UK - it'll be an opium one. Quite legal. So presumably opium isn't dangerous, whilst cannabis (any sort - the whole genus is banned) isn't. Or that's what the kids will think.

LurkingHusband Thu 21-Jan-16 17:13:11

we're in France btw.

No idea about French drug laws. I doubt they're much more sense than UK ones.

ppeatfruit Thu 21-Jan-16 17:18:19

No I don't think they are. But an english couple were taken to a police station for growing them, accidentally like us, (reported by a mean neighbour). No doubt the police laughed about it.

Oldraver Thu 21-Jan-16 17:37:49

There are opium poppies all over the shop were we live..the police would be inundated

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now