Pubdate: Fri, 02 May 2003
Source: Ottawa Sun (CN ON)
Copyright: 2003, Canoe Limited Partnership
Author: J. Scopelleti
Note: Parenthetical remark by the Sun editor, headline by newshawk


Regarding Prime Minister Jean Chretien's announcement on the
decriminalization of marijuana: I believe that the only "valid" concern
regarding the legalization of marijuana is that it may lead to people
getting into hard drugs like cocaine, crack, heroin, etc.

The reason for this concern is that currently people can only buy marijuana
in the streets. When you go to the street corner to buy marijuana, the
dealers are offering several "alternatives" like cocaine, crack and heroin.
The dealer is "pushing" his or her products so the temptation may be there
for some people to try other substances. When marijuana is legalized, the
way to alleviate those concerns is to retail the product the same way as we
do alcohol.

In most provinces, alcohol is sold primarily in government liquor stores.
Marijuana, if retailed similarly to alcohol, is restricted to those over the
age of majority and the option to buy cocaine, crack or heroin is not

J. Scopelleti

Vancouver, B.C.

(Somehow, we suspect the demand for other illegal drugs will find the supply
- -- and vice versa) 
- ---
MAP posted-by: Josh