Pubdate: Tue, 05 Apr 2011
Source: Guelph Mercury (CN ON)
Copyright: 2011 Guelph Mercury Newspapers Limited
Author: Russell Barth



If the Conservatives win a majority in the federal election, I want 
to alert Canadians that this would result in the complete closure of 
the medical marijuana program at Health Canada, and my likely death.

Stephen Harper raged against the program when he was in opposition. 
His government hasn't managed, staffed or funded the program to give 
it a chance to succeed. Harper seems to hate medical marijuana users 
because we represent the "foot in the door" toward full legalization, 
so he will do everything he can to stop us. But he needs a majority 
to do it because he needs to override our Charter Rights in order to 
shut the program down.

His government has been trying for years to get a mandatory minimum 
sentencing bill passed. Harper thinks marijuana has zero medical 
value, and plans to build a dozen new jails to deal with "unreported" 
crimes -- meaning pot users, obviously.

With a Harper majority, I fear police will shut down every compassion 
club and licensed medical garden this summer, and every 
soon-to-be-former-licence-holders -- people with epilepsy, multiple, 
cancer, and AIDS -- arrested and charged. If you don't believe me, 
just ask any Tory MP or candidate what the Harper Plan for pot users 
is, and you get the one world answer: "Jail!" Ask them about medical 
marijuana and they will likely say that there is "no such thing."

Medical marijuana in Canada is now officially dead. It is now just a 
matter of when, not if. And for people like my wife and I, that means 
sickness, arrest, and probable death. When I tell reporters about 
this, they roll their eyes. So it is over. I literally do not expect 
to live to see 2012, and I have the media to thank for it. They have 
failed to convey the full scale of Harper's malice for us.

Russell Barth

Educators For Sensible Drug Policy

Federally Licensed Medical Marijuana User

Nepean, Ont.
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