Pubdate: Fri, 07 May 2010
Source: Langley Advance (CN BC)
Copyright: 2010 Lower Mainland Publishing Group Inc.
Author: Russell Barth


Dear Editor,

How about these arguments [Stoners need better arguments, April 30 
Painful Truth, Langley Advance]:

THC (and the hundreds of other compounds found in cannabis) have 
dozens of therapeutic applications, including, but not limited to, 
the shrinking of tumors.

Curing cancer strikes me as a good reason to legalize pot. The 
"links" to mental illness are nothing more than links. The studies 
themselves show that it is equally as likely that the mental illness 
caused the pot use, not the other way around. There is no scientific 
evidence that marijuana causes any mental illness or brain damage. 
Further research would have shown the writer that.

Every bust is a subsidy to the whole industry. Not only does the 
illegality of pot make it more lucrative, every time the cops tear 
down a grow-op, they make the 99 per cent they will never ever catch 
even more valuable.

Marijuana's effects on driving, are, like everything cops say about 
pot, wildly exaggerated. People already drive high. Suggesting that 
legalized pot would mean more stoned drivers supposes that the laws 
as they are now are somehow acting as a deterrent. They aren't.

Listen, we smoke more pot per capita than anyone else in the world, 
we smoke the most potent pot in the world, and admit to toking and 
driving more than anyone else in the world, our roads are more 
crowded every year, and yet our accident numbers continue to go down. 
This indicates that pot is making Canadian roads SAFER!

Right now we spend $1 billion a year on cops, courts, and cages, and 
all we have to show for it is a flourishing gang community, 
contaminated product, and a deficit. The hippie stoners at the Fraser 
Institute crunched the numbers and figured out that a regulated pot 
market would generate $3 billion in annual tax revenue. Speculation 
sets the expected increase at tourism at roughly $1-1.5 billion a year.

In the Netherlands, they are closing jails and laying off guards 
because their whacky whacky-tobacky laws have reduced crime to record 
levels. So legalizing pot would reduce the crime rate, save us money, 
generate billions in annual revenue, undermine the gangsters, reduce 
police powers of coercion and intrusion, reduce the opportunity for 
police and government corruption, and treat dozens of costly diseases 
- - possibly curing cancer.

I think the cops need to come up with a better argument for 
prohibition, because none of the available evidence supports their 
assertions. As for, "Unfortunately, to do all of this properly, 
you'll have to be sober," flippant fops who know nothing about 
cannabis always make jokes indicating that people who use pot are 
somehow discombobulated.

As Federally Licensed Medical Marijuana User who is also married to 
one, I deeply resent the notion that my use of pot is stupid, or that 
my pot use makes me stupid - especially when that suggestion comes 
from some hack who clearly knows very little about marijuana or it's effects.

Russell Barth,
Federally Licensed Medical Marijuana User 
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MAP posted-by: Keith Brilhart