NORML now reports that the last three issues of NORML News, including Spring 2009, have been referred by the police to the New Zealand Censor.
In another sign authorities here are ramping up the drug war, New Zealand's most popular marijuana magazine NORML News has been sent to the censors.Regardless of the Censor's office classification, my critique of the drug harm index remains available here. Although I'd mildly enjoy the bad boy props of having published in a banned publication, I do hope the Censor's office is reasonable.
"This seems to be more fallout from Operation Lime, the massive raids on gardening stores earlier this month," said NORML News editor Chris Fowlie.
"Now the secretary of Internal Affairs has referred the past three issues of our magazine, which promotes law reform and civil rights, to the censors."
"We are outraged they are trying to censor our free speech. The magazine is an important campaign tool for us to raise awareness about drug law issues, especially at this time when the Law Commission is reviewing the Misuse of Drugs Act."
The Law Commission's issues paper has called for the removal of penalties for drug use and a general winding back of marijuana prohibition in favour of tolerating or cautioning users and licensing medical marijuana growers.
"Suppression of free speech is one of the very harms of prohibition that we are campaigning against. Authorities are deliberately trying to interfere with our rights."
The issues sent to the Office of Film and Literature Classification are:
NORML News Winter 2009
NORML News Spring 2009
NORML News Summer 2010
Until this is decided, NORML News remains on sale at more than 150 outlets nationwide, including many mainstream book and magazine stores, as well as gardening stores, tobacconists and herbal high outlets.
30,000 copies are printed of each issue - the next is due out in July.
See www.norml.org.nz for the nearest stockist, and get your copy now before it is banned!