Pubdate: Fri, 08 Jul 2005
Source: Nunatsiaq News (CN NT)
Copyright: 2005 Nortext Publishing Corporation
Author: Ed deVries


In his/her letter the anonymous author says marijuana is the "cause" of 
Inuit losing their culture.

I know that marijuana is widely used in the North and that it is not an 
indigenous plant, so someone brought it here. I don't believe marijuana is 
the culprit that is taking away Inuit culture. That is such a vast and 
complex reality and not the fault of any one thing.

There are a lot of contributing factors and the abuse of marijuana, I 
admit, is one of the contributors. That would be a given? The abuse of any 
substance only ever takes away.

As Marijuana Party leader for Nunavut, I can tell you that I am dedicated 
to helping find better ways to end the abuse and help heal the damages.

Keeping it criminal and shameful is only adding to the problem and is 
abusive in its own nature.The persecution and shame only divide the people 

Legalizing it would allow many avenues that could support, healing, better 
education, better family support, better health care. Not perfect - better.

If as the author says "90 per cent of the North is stoned 24 hours a day," 
then we better do something different and get the right attitude as a 
nation and help those people that need it, not throw them in jail or call 
them down cause they smoke pot.

The author admits he or she has "abused" this a long time and has gone 
nowhere because of it. Well, my friend, the "gone nowhere" is because of 
abuse - not use of this herb. Not signing your name shows me that you 
prefer to stay hidden, to smoke in hiding and blame all your problems on 
something other than your own choices. It's such a shame that so many live 
just like that today here in Nunavut.

As Inuit, you adapted and survived and indeed thrived under good 
conditions, always been that way - or so I am told. So if 90 per cent of 
the people here are smoking pot illegally and say 50 per cent of them are 
"abusing" it, we better soon get with the reality to adapt and survive and 
thrive with a new way of approaching an obvious problem.

And we better do it soon.

The Nunavut Marijuana Party has formed and registered in Ottawa an 
electorial district association and we are hoping to be able to raise 
awareness of the issues specific to the North. Funds raised by the EDA will 
go towards establishing a detox and treatment facility here in the capital.

Legalizing pot isn't about getting everyone stoned - it's about adapting.

Ed deVries,  Nunavut Marijuana Party Founder, Iqaluit
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