Pubdate: Wed, 04 Aug 2010
Source: 100 Mile House Free Press (CN BC)
Copyright: 2010 100 Mile House Free Press
Author: Wayne Phillips


To the editor:

I am responding to your story, headlined Going to pot: Bill raises
concerns, on page A11 in the June 30 edition of the Free Press.

The drug war is the perpetual treadmill of drug criminalization; it
offers no great solutions or long-term benefits for any, nor has it
ever. It just goes on and on.

To add mandatory minimum sentences for cannabis cultivation of more
than six plants (to the mix) will only further exasperate an already
fractured situation.

Bill S-10 will, in effect, provide yet another layer of insulation for
organized crime's elite while turning prisons into recruiting depots
for gangs.

Youth will increasingly become viable players in the illicit trade, on
the streets, in schools and on playgrounds; the mean age for
experimentation and involvement will decrease as the availability (of
drugs) soar and prices become that much more competitive.

This bill will also increase annual costs to the taxpayer; it will
further beleaguer enforcement; and enrich organized crime that much

In addition, it will further endanger/corrupt youth and communities
alike. It will be responsible for both unprecedented levels of
violence and increasingly sophisticated weaponry that will be used
right across Canada.

To say Bill S-10 is counter-productive is a massive understatement, to
say the least.

It is completely unethical for Canada's ruling party to continue to
ignore the very real power they have to improve the situation.

It could reconsider drug laws with the aim of undermining not only
criminal elements both at home and abroad, but to actually safeguard
youth and communities alike.

To implement "tough on crime" legislation, which only serves to
perpetuate a further escalation of problems, is, in and of itself,
morally reprehensible. To do it knowingly so as to be perceived as
being "tough on crime," in spite of all the concerns raised, should be
considered as nothing short of treason.

Wayne Phillips

Communication director,

Educators For Sensible Drug Policy
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