Pubdate: Wed, 04 Jul 2001
Source: Kitchener-Waterloo Record (CN ON)
Copyright: 2001 Kitchener-Waterloo Record
Author: Neil MacNaughton
Bookmark: (Cannabis)
Bookmark: (Decrim/Legalization)


In response to the June 26 article, Pot Growers Were A Team, do the 
people of Waterloo Region support marijuana prohibition? Do they know 
this means they also support the black market and organized crime?

Marijuana use dates back thousands of years. Its effects are 
sufficiently desirable that demand for it will never go away. In 
1923, we prohibited the legal sale of marijuana. This immediately 
created the black market. In effect, we chose to let organized crime 
meet the demand.

Occasionally, society is successful in curbing marijuana production 
by engaging in "lengthy and costly drug investigations," such as in 
the report of June 26. We don't nearly get all of it off the street. 
Meanwhile, organized crime rakes in millions from marijuana users who 
pay exorbitant black market prices caused by the drug's illegality.

It's time to legalize marijuana and meet the demand ourselves. By 
licensing farmers to grow it and vendors to sell it, we will remove 
it from the black market and organized crime grow operations will be 
out of our neighbourhoods.

Neil MacNaughton
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