Pubdate: Wed, 16 Mar 2005
Source: Duncan News Leader (CN BC)
Copyright: 2005 Duncan News Leader
Author: Jordan Ellis


Dear editor,

Tragedy is often accompanied by hysteria and misplaced blame. This can be
excused, to some extent, as a natural human reaction ruled by emotion rather
than reason, though one can hope that reason will eventually prevail.

However, a tragedy can also be used by shrewd ideologues to push certain
aspects of their agenda that would, under normal circumstances, be seen as

For example, some are using the recent killings of four police officers as a
means of attacking marijuana and its users. Never mind the fact that the
perpetrator was obviously a dangerous individual, regardless of which
criminal enterprise he had chosen to pursue; that he chose a marijuana
grow-op is apparently an indictment against this otherwise benign substance,
peacefully enjoyed by millions worldwide without incident.

The simple fact of the matter is that, by making a substance illegal, you
are creating an environment in which dangerous criminals, as opposed to
legitimate business owners, are in control of the marketplace. Manufacture,
distribution, and sales of this substance cannot be regulated, and the
consumer suffers as a result. This was true during the prohibition of
alcohol, and it will remain true under the prohibition of any other
substance that is in high demand.

Jim Roszko was a sick individual with a history of violence and sexual
assault, and he was, without question, directly responsible for the deaths
of those four officers. Let's not distort the tragedy with misplaced blame
and anti-marijuana hysteria.

Jordan Ellis,

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