Pubdate: Wed, 04 Feb 2004
Source: Jasper Booster (CN AB)
Copyright: 2004 The Jasper Booster
Author: Robert Sharpe


Jasper Booster - If MP Rob Merrifield is serious about keeping
dangerous drugs out of the hands of children he is going to have to
come up with a common sense plan that does not involve abdicating that
responsibility to organized crime. Decriminalization acknowledges the
social reality of marijuana and frees users from the stigma of
life-shattering criminal records. What's really needed is a regulated
market with age controls.

Separating the hard and soft drug markets is critical. As long as
marijuana distribution remains in the hands of organized crime,
consumers will continue to come into contact with addictive drugs like
cocaine. This "gateway" is the direct result of a fundamentally flawed
policy. Marijuana may be relatively harmless, but marijuana
prohibition is deadly.

The biggest obstacle to marijuana law reform in Canada is the U.S.
government. Despite evidence that punitive marijuana laws fail to
deter use, the former land of the free and current record holder in
citizens incarcerated continues to uses its superpower status to
export its failed drug policies around the globe. Lifetime use of
marijuana is higher in the U.S. than any European country, yet the
U.S. is one of the few Western countries that uses its criminal
justice system to punish citizens who prefer marijuana to martinis.

Canada should follow the lead of Europe and Just Say No to the
American Inquisition.

Robert Sharpe

MPA Policy Analyst, Common Sense for Drug Policy

Washington, DC
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MAP posted-by: Larry Seguin