Pubdate: Sun, 08 Sep 2002
Source: Winnipeg Sun (CN MB)
Copyright: 2002 Canoe Limited Partnership
Author: Omar van den Berg
Note: Parenthetical remark by the Sun editor.

Gov't-run 'pot' shops

So, the government is thinking it might want to legalize marijuana and sell
it in government run "pot stores."

Let's get serious. I live in The Netherlands, and it has been already proven
the government having its hands in the direct sale of marijuana is undoable.

The framework for the manner in which marijuana can be sold by private
business owners is already available and free of charge in the Archives of
Social Studies in The Netherlands.

Why do Canadian politicians have to reinvent the wheel when all they have to
do is copy the same format as the Dutch?

Now we have this ludicrous argument that "you can buy pot at 16 but not
cigarettes or liquor?" In the Netherlands we look at it quite differently.
What takes more maturity -- to control a glass in your hand filled with
liquor and/or a cigarette or joint or drive a 2,000-pound machine down the

I think a car travelling 100-plus km/h is a lot more dangerous than smoking
pot and requires a hell of a lot more maturity, but you can do that at 16 in
Canada, in the Netherlands at 18.

If the government wants to be responsible for the well-being of Canadians it
should think for more than five seconds.

At the end of the day, somebody will roll a green bud into a joint and smoke
it and, believe me, nobody needs the government to show them how to do that.

Omar van den Berg

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

(It is our Senate, not our federal government, that is suggesting legalizing
pot. So, Omar, roll up a doobie -- and relax.)
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MAP posted-by: Josh