Pubdate: Mon, 27 Aug 2001
Source: Oak Bay News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2001 Oak Bay News
Author: Alan Randell
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Canada)
Bookmark: (Decrim/Legalization)


Re: Police bust marijuana grow operation on Cadboro Bay Road, Oak Bay 
News, Aug. 20.

Lord, save us from a free, but lazy press.

At a time when our drug laws are being questioned as never before, 
how is it possible that, as far as one can determine, your reporter 
failed to ask the police officer a single question about the efficacy 
or otherwise of the law prohibiting certain drugs? Isn't that what 
reporters do, ask questions? Here are a few pertinent questions your 
reporter should ask the next time he has a chat with a drug cop:

1. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms implies that citizens have the 
right to pursue their own form of happiness so long as they hurt no 
one else. Why, then, does the government feel it has the right to 
punish individuals for what they choose to ingest into their own 

2. Is it your position that the police are duty bound to enforce any 
law no matter how unjust? Perhaps I should remind you that Adolph 
Eichmann protested he was simply following orders when he assisted in 
implementing Hitler's Final Solution but the Israelis hanged him 
anyway. Did Eichmann get a raw deal in your estimation? Would you 
feel hard done by if you were sentenced to a few years in jail for 
your part in enforcing drug prohibition, a strategy many have 
characterized as a state sanctioned pogrom against an identifiable 
minority of innocent people?

3. If drugs are banned because they are harmful to users, why then 
are tobacco and alcohol not banned?

Doesn't this seem unfair to those who prefer illegal drugs?

If we ban one harmful drug, shouldn't we ban all harmful drugs?

4. Is it not true that banning a drug cuts the users off from access 
to drugs of known potency and purity and thereby harms them far more 
than would otherwise be the case? Weren't thousands of Americans 
poisoned or blinded during Prohibition? Didn't the problems vanish 
when alcohol was legalized again?

5. The 1973 Le Dain Commission concluded, "There appears to be little 
permanent physiological damage from chronic use of pure opiate 
narcotics." Why then ban heroin?

6. If prohibition is so great, why did America give up on Prohibition?

7. Is it not true that if drugs and prostitution were legalized, the 
power of the Hell's Angels would be severely curtailed? After all, 
Prohibition created Al Capone, not the other way around.

8. Is it not true that if marijuana were legalized, marijuana grow 
operations would be no more dangerous, do no more damage and steal no 
more hydro than the average tomato grow operation?

9. I've been told that police officers support laws like our drug 
laws because they increase crime and hence police budgets and police 
power. In fact, I'm told they would be in seventh heaven if tobacco 
and/or alcohol were banned. Would you care to comment?

For me, there is no more reason to punish drug users and dealers 
today than there was in the past to hang witches, lynch blacks, 
incarcerate Japanese Canadians or gas Jews. In fact, drug prohibition 
is nothing less than a state-sanctioned pogrom against an 
identifiable minority of innocent drug users and distributors in 
order, first, to ostracize them, and then, to destroy them.

Kind of makes you wonder who won World War II, doesn't it?

No, I don't have too much respect for the police these days.

Alan Randell
- ---
MAP posted-by: Josh