- Redazione IZI S.p.A.
- 7 July 2023
We found ourselves talking about cannabis again after the intervention of President Giorgia Meloni on the occasion of the International Day against drug abuse and illicit trafficking. “There is no such thing as soft drugs. Drugs are all bad for everyone” declared the prime minister shortly before the leftist senator Riccardo Magi displayed a sign that read: “Cannabis, if the State doesn’t take care of it, mafias will do it”.
These are two opposing visions on an issue that, due to its divisive nature, cyclically is in the public eye – the last time dating back to last year with the presentation of the referendum (later judged inadmissible) by the Better Legal Association. IZI published a survey to understand how effectively our country is divided on the legalization of marijuana.
We discovered, net of those who do not express themselves, that more than half of Italians – 52% – consider themselves in favour: we are talking about over 26 million adult citizens. However, the number is down compared to the survey we carried out only last year, when positive opinions on legalization reached almost 60% of respondents.
The reasons of the ones in favour are, among the first on the list, subtracting the soft drug market in the hands of the mafias, followed by an increase in safety certification of substances and the opportunity to treat cannabis as it already happens with tobacco and alcohol, by exposing the possible risks with appropriate labels. Those who are against it, on the other hand, do so because they believe that with legalization the consumption among young people will also increase, that cannabis is the first step towards heavier drugs, and, finally, that the difference between soft and hard drugs does not exist.
Supporters of legal cannabis are found mostly in southern Italy and on the islands and vote for left-wing and center-left parties, such as the Democratic Party and the Five star Movement for which there are positive opinions of 54% and 59% respectively. The unfavorable concentrate their votes between the right and center-right parties: the Lega party is the most opposed with a percentage that is close to 70% – the percentage was 46% last year -, followed by the voters of Brothers of Italy with 65%. Forza Italia, in contrast with its allies, registers 35% against and 39% in favour.
However, the real discerning factor turns out to be age: 63% of young people aged between 18 and 34 say yes to legalization – with only 20% of unfavorable -, a percentage that drastically decreases when passing to the 34-54 range, which registers a 46% yes and, above all, people over 55 with 52% against and 33% in favour. Only last year in the latter range there was a 40% yes against “only” a 43% no.
The research has been published on the Italian version of Huffington Post.