Pubdate: Thu, 14 Sep 2006
Source: Stettler Independent (CN AB)
Copyright: 2006 Stettler Independent
Author: Russell Barth, Federal Medical Marijuana License Holder


Dear Editor;

Re Front Page Article Last Week "We Have It All"

All of this hand-wringing and teeth gnashing about illegal drugs 
seems foolish when one considers that junk food will kill more 
Canadians than all illegal drugs combined. Add in the fact that 
alcohol and tobacco (both legal) will each take many more lives than 
illegal drugs, and The War On Certain Drugs seems even more absurd.

Then there is the cost and damage caused by drug prohibition itself, 
which is far more damaging to society than the drugs themselves.

This is not an opinion, it is a scientifically and historically proven fact.

I applaud anyone's effort to keep kids off of drugs, but many of 
these so-called "drug education programs" have proven in many areas 
to cause more harm than good.

As a Federal Medical Marijuana License Holder who is also married to 
one, I resent the non-factual information on marijuana, and the "all 
use is abuse" attitude that they usually adopt. I would rather 
encourage teens to question authority and adult propaganda.

Adults -- especially police -- have lost a lot of credibility when it 
comes to drugs, because they lie and exaggerate the so-called dangers 
of marijuana. They tell kids that marijuana "is ten times more potent 
than before," will cause cancer, schizophrenia, impotence, permanent 
stupidity and an addiction to hard drugs.

When kids discover the truth on their own (which is just a Google 
search away), they will realize they have been systematically lied to 
by people they once trusted. They will likely conclude that if adults 
lied about Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and marijuana, they must be 
lying about meth, crack, heroin, ecstasy, booze, weapons, extreme 
sports, safe-sex and safe-driving, too.

And who can blame them? We live in a "drug culture" that advertises 
booze, fast cars, fast food, violent movies and video games, and 
drugs of all kinds on TV. Then we tell kids "Say no to drugs." We 
give kids Ritalin, instead of just reducing their sugar and Game-Boy 
intake, and then tell them "Marijuana is dangerous!" They see right 
though this hypocrisy. A ruse by any other name.

Taking the drug business out of the hands of teens and criminals and 
putting it into the hands of responsible adults is socially conservative.

Generating tax revenue from that industry is fiscally conservative, 
and using that money to teach kids why they should avoid drugs is 
morally conservative.

For those keen on educating kids about drugs -- without all the 
fear-mongering, hyperbole, and absurd hypocrisy of the standard drug 
education programs, I recommend the Educators For Sensible Drug 
Policy website at

Russell Barth

Federal Medical Marijuana License Holder

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