Pubdate: Wed, 20 Jun 2007
Source: Salmon Arm Observer (CN BC)
Copyright: 2007 Salmon Arm Observer
Author: Neil Magnuson


Cannabis is a plant. Indoor gardens are not always dangerous but drug
prohibition does put our children at risk.

The demonization and attempted prohibition of some drugs in our
society is causing far more harm than the abuse of the drugs themselves.

The harms include stigmatizing and criminalizing large numbers of
otherwise law-abiding citizens, wasting enormous amounts of scarce tax
dollars, creating an increased demand, and allowing a black market to
handle the supply while making enormous profits and endangering
innocent people in wars over "turf."

But the most disturbing of all is the harm being done to our youth.

The government tries to reach its objectives in prohibiting certain
drugs by penalizing and harming, as much as possible, those who are
caught with illegal drugs, through stigmatization, criminal records,
monetary fines and incarceration. Unfortunately it's the youth of
Canada who are harmed the most.

When a parent is criminalized with a drug conviction it hurts the
whole family unit. If there is a financial penalty, it penalizes the
whole family. When families are penalized or in turmoil, the members
who are hurt the most are the children.

Many adults understand that the proper use of cannabis is a safer and
saner choice than the "legal" alternatives like alcohol, tobacco and
synthetic pharmaceutical drugs. Many of these adults are parents.

As was the cry that ended alcohol prohibition, end the "drug war,"
save our children!

Neil Magnuson,

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