Polish Party Leader Tries to Spark a Joint in Parliament, Gets Ratted Out

Janusz Palikot, the leader of a new left-wing party in Poland,  is so awesomely pro-pot he threatened to light up a joint in Parliament on Friday, but ended up just burning some incense instead. 

“We’re trying to get into room 143 to burn some grass, in accordance with our announcement,” Palikot told reporters in a news conference.

But his plan was spoiled by Ewa Kopacz (square!), the speaker who "vowed not to let him break the law in Parliament," the Washington Post said. Kopacz was so not down with the idea she reported Palikot to prosecutors, but Palikot stayed cool. He "simply simply lit incense sticks containing a tiny amount of cannabis. They emitted a scent of burning marijuana, but Palikot said they were purchased legally in a shop," the Post said. 

According to the  Post, Palikot is working to liberalize Poland, and part of his mission is to legalize soft drugs:

Palikot is introducing a draft law that would decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana.

His proposal has little chance of passing, however. His party, Palikot’s Movement, won 10 percent of votes in October elections, becoming the third largest party in Parliament but still lacking the votes needed to change laws.

The party has also vowed to support gay rights and to fight to liberalize the country’s restrictive abortion laws. It also opposes the strong influence of the Catholic church in politics and society, and has called for the removal of a Christian cross hanging in the Parliament.

The country’s first ever openly gay and transsexual lawmakers entered Parliament this fall on Palikot’s party ticket.

Here's to hoping he manages to spark a joint in Parliament, even if the legislation doesn't pass, because reminding politicians that they, too, smoked weed, is one of the best ways to highlight the hypocrisy of their draconian drug laws. 

Prosecutors are investigating whether Palikot broke a law by "promoting or advertising" drugs, which could carry a sentence of life in prison. 

AlterNet / By Kristen Gwynne

Posted at January 20, 2012, 5:20am

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