Pubdate: Wed, 27 Mar 2002
Source: Hamilton Spectator (CN ON)
Copyright: The Hamilton Spectator 2002
Author: Lyle Howard Seave


RE: 'New politics of pot emerging' (March 19). Media who get all giddy over 
Ernie Eves, Jim Flaherty and Chris Stockwell's marijuana confessions should 
be reminded that 66,000 Canadians were arrested for pot offences in 2000. 
Of those, 69 per cent (45,350 people) were charged with simple possession.

I suggest that Canadians start "narking" these "hip" politicians to the 
U.S. border agencies, just as they should rat out Jean Charest, Kim 
Campbell and other hypocrites who admitted their marijuana use, yet refuse 
to do anything about ending its prohibition.

Any admittance of prior use of marijuana (or just contact with marijuana 
users) is enough to be banned from entering the excited states to the 
south. (Actually, having a hemp T-shirt or some vegan/pro-earth sticker is 
often reason enough.) Canadian Olympic hero Ross Rebagliati was banned from 
entering the U.S. last month -- not because of his Nagano '98 ordeal but 
because he admitted in an interview to having had experimented with 
marijuana. When politicians are barred from jobs and travelling abroad like 
ordinary Canadians, maybe it'll make them reflect on how this insanely 
costly and illogical prohibition is affecting all our lives.

Considering that most European countries (including Britain recently) have 
moved to a more reasonable marijuana position, our politicians should be 
looking at replacing a failed policy instead of giving out vague excuses.

Unfortunately, our federal government seems to be secretly leaning towards 
the failed American War on Drugs (which arrested 735,000 people for 
marijuana in 2000).

The 1969 LeDain Royal Commission on the Non-Medical Use of Drugs is 
recognized as one of the most thorough and accurate assessments of drugs 
and drug policy in the world. But none of its recommendations was ever 

But that's OK; politicians have always been too cowardly to act on 
important social matters. Just as with gay rights, abortion and medical 
marijuana, it will probably be the courts that also put an end to marijuana 
prohibition, even though that is not the job of the judiciary.

What are we paying these politicians for, anyway?

Lyle Howard Seave

Saint-Felicien, Quebec.
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