Pubdate: Fri, 12 Jan 2007
Source: Comox Valley Record (CN BC)
Copyright: 2007 Comox Valley Record
Author: John Case


Dear editor,

Afghanistan produces over 11 times more opium than the rest of the
world combined (National Geographic, Dec. 2006).

The trade in opium fuels the insurgency in Afghanistan. Because the
production and distribution of all presently illegal drugs is related,
the consumption of any of them endangers all Canadians working in
Afghanistan. Yes, that includes marijuana -- unless you are growing it

There have been successful drug eradication campaigns in several
countries, but never actually during a conflict. An Afghan catch-22
situation. However, it would greatly help to assure a just resolution
of the Afghan conflict if we conducted a successful "war on drugs"

A small, pragmatic first step to that end would be to "legalize"
marijuana: reducing its basic price to that of an agricultural
commodity -- and taxing it like tobacco. This would knock one
lucrative support from under the feet of organized crime, and free up
police capacity to go after the purveyors of far more dangerous

Many users of marijuana are under the delusion that continued use of
the weed will somehow promote its "legalization." Does speeding
increase speed limits? That is not how a moralistic oligarchy (our
federal government) works. A Canadian catch-22 situation.

At present, the only things that will be promoted, in part, by
continued marijuana consumption (again, unless you grow your own) are,
in sequence: organized crime, the unwilling production of cocaine and
opium, the use of such "base" to finance insurgencies, and the
"putting in harm's way" of other Canadians -- maybe even a neighbour
- -- in Afghanistan.

John Case,
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MAP posted-by: Richard Lake