Pubdate: Sat, 05 Aug 2000
Source: Halifax Daily News (CN NS)
Copyright: 2000 The Daily News.
Authors: Lawrence Hodder, Timothy J. Meehan, A.D. Verge


To the editor:

I write regarding George Publicover's letter concerning marijuana and
Amsterdam (Pot is Harmful, Aug. 3). Obviously, he was in the seedy
part of Amsterdam, a section every large city has. There are streets
in good old Halifax I would stay clear of because of drugs.  Most of
the time George writes a good letter, but this time he is out to
lunch.  I suggest next time he visits Europe, he inquire on where not
to go. Generally, he will be informed by the public on streets to
avoid, not cities to be avoided.

Lawrence Hodder,

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To the editor:

George Publicover says that in Amsterdam, where cannabis is "sort of
legal," there are "many strung-out people wandering the streets every
night." Has Publicover ever been downtown in Halifax, Montreal,
Toronto or any other large city (or even small town) after last call
for alcohol? If we "buy into the crap that marijuana is harmless," it
would be dishonest if we didn't take a hard look at legal alcohol (a
much more harmful substance) at the same time.  So why is drinking
still legal? I would suggest Publicover read up on the history of
alcohol prohibition for an answer on what a resounding success that

Timothy J. Meehan
Toronto, Ont.

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To the editor:

I just read a letter from Mr. Publicover, your most vocal letter
writer, stating that marijuana is evil and should not be legalized.

Typically, George has not backed up his argument with any discernible
facts.  Marijuana is not an addictive drug, unlike tobacco. It doesn't
do the damage that tobacco does to the lungs (although mixing it with
tobacco to smoke can do damage, I'm sure).

And I've also been to Amsterdam. It's not a city full of down-and-out
junkies shuffling through the streets. It's a beautiful city full of
history, culture and lovely architecture.

It's also a place where people don't go insane if someone has five
grams of pot on them.  I think Mr. Publicover is simply doing
something online newsgroup posters call "trolling": he's trying to
cause a stink.

A. D. Verge
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