Pubdate: Tue, 04 Apr 2006
Source: Link, The (CN QU Edu)
Copyright: 2006 The Link
Author: Nick Metaxas


Dear editor,

I went to go see Marc Emery speak at Concordia and I was very 
disappointed with what I heard. I support the decriminalization of 
marijuana so when I heard Emery's arguments in defence of this cause 
I couldn't help but cringe. I mean, come on, citing Genesis to make a 
case for marijuana is just silly. So the Bible doesn't explicitly 
prohibit the use of any plants. So what? What about poppies or coca 
shrubs? Should we apply Emery's logic to these cases and 
decriminalize opiates and cocaine for theological reasons? Clearly not!

Emery spent his time bringing up bad points like these instead of 
focusing on more salient issues. For example, private individuals 
owning seeds enables them to grow their own pot and thus cut the 
intermediary of organized crime out. This deprives drug traffickers 
of vital income. Emery started strong with this point, but then 
proceeded to tell the audience about how marijuana helped alleviate 
his anxiety the first time he performed cunnilingus. At that point, I 
started to question Emery's commitment to staying out of jail.

Another argument he brought forth that really pissed me off was when 
he said that marijuana users are "the most oppressed people in the 
world." I'd like to call the standards by which Emery identifies 
oppressed people into question. I'm sure we can all think of numerous 
groups that qualify as more oppressed than pot smokers do. How about 
homeless people, the mentally ill, aboriginal peoples in the 
Americas, homosexuals, women, Palestinians--I think all these groups 
have a more legitimate claim to being an oppressed people than a 
bunch of stoners who have the luxury of smoking pot and tuning out 
for a few hours.

As discouraging to the marijuana cause as I found Emery's discourse 
to be, I still support his being tried in Canada. This is not due to 
any affinity I have for Emery as an individual but rather because his 
case raises many nationalist concerns. He is a Canadian citizen that 
was engaging in illegal activities in our country. I see the U.S.'s 
request that we extradite him for trial in their country as an attack 
on our sovereignty. These crimes were committed here, which begs the 
question, just whose country is this anyways? Where does our 
government get its mandate from, the Canadian electorate or the U.S. 

Nick Metaxas,

Hounours Religion
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