Matt's Crow Country: Mephedrone ban not the answer

PUBLISHED: 10:11 30 March 2010 | UPDATED: 16:18 11 May 2010

KNEES are jerking all over Westminster at the moment as our beloved politicians come up with ways of garnering a few extra votes at the forthcoming general election. I suppose we shouldn t be surprised by this, but it does annoy me when important issues a

KNEES are jerking all over Westminster at the moment as our beloved politicians come up with ways of garnering a few extra votes at the forthcoming general election.

I suppose we shouldn't be surprised by this, but it does annoy me when important issues are hijacked just because it is nearing election season.

I refer to imminent banning of currently legal drug mephedrone, or M-Cat. The tabloids have been screaming for action since the substance was linked to the death of two teenagers in Yorkshire last month, and it seems the government are about to oblige.

Senior drug advisor Dr Polly Taylor, of the Advisory Council for Misuse of Drugs, has already resigned in protest, saying she "does not have trust" in the way the government would treat the council's advice.

Of course people dying as an apparent result of drug use is not a desirable state of affairs, but anyone who thinks this will be stopped by making the substance in question illegal is kidding themselves.

In fact, you could argue that it would only make the situation worse, because there would be less control of the supply of mephredrone, which would undoubtedly fall solely into the hands of the criminal fraternity.

Our attitude to drug use in this country is totally wrong. It should be addressed as a health issue, rather than a criminal one, and reactionary bans such as the one being suggested do little to help anyone other than our elected representatives.

- The end of an era was announced last week when ITV revealed they are axing police drama The Bill.

This is probably not a surprise, as the widely held view among viewers at Crow towers is that the show has been going steadily downhill in recent years.

However it will be shame to see one of Royston's chief claims to fame disappear from our screens when the doors of Sunhill Police Station are closed for a final time this autumn.

Creator Geoff McQueen was a Royston resident, and the Sunhill sobriquet stems from the street in Royston which goes by the same name.

But with Royston's own police station having reduced its opening hours in the last year, it is probably not a surprise to see Sunhill going the same way!

- I've always been a big fan of Sven-Goran Eriksson.

Latterly my admiration for the former England football boss has become based less on his managerial ability, and more on his knack for making vast amounts of cash.

Witness the massive pay offs he's picked up in recent years after mediocre showings with England, Man City, and Mexico. The man's a genius.

This week it was announced that he will be guiding the Ivory Coast through this summer's World Cup. The remuneration he will receive hasn't been revealed, but it will no doubt be sizeable.

It brought to mind a quote the Swede gave during his short and ill-fated spell as director of football at Notts County: "No, I don't know where the money comes from (...) I'm not interested in that. The important thing is that the money comes."

There we have it ladies and gentleman, modern football accurately summed up in one sentence. Keep up the good work Sven.

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