Pubdate: Tue, 29 Nov 2011
Source: Kamloops Daily News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2011 Kamloops Daily News
Author: Lenard Segnitz


To open I would like to state that I am not now, nor ever have been, a 
user of marijuana.  While I support its legalization I hope I never 
feel the need to use it. I would hope that my son does not choose to 
use it for non-medical purposes. I would hope, however, that if anyone 
in my family felt it was medically beneficial to use marijuana that 
there is a safe and legal way to do so.

John Noakes outlines the reasons why indoor marijuana growing is not 
desired. I agree with him that growing marijuana indoors is not 
desirable. I would add that large-scale indoor grow operation of any 
plant is not desirable, with the obvious exception of greenhouse growing.

The motivation of those operating an indoor grow operation is 
precisely because of prohibition. They are trying to hide it. From out 
of the '50s and '60s cannabis gained the moniker "weed." That is 
because cannabis grows like a weed. It grows so well in most Canadian 
climates that farmers have used it to crowd out other weeds in their fields.

In Kamloops you probably need to irrigate cannabis to get it to grow 
well. Legalization would completely eliminate the need or motivation 
to grow the stuff indoors. It is orders of magnitude cheaper to grow 
it in the open air. You don't need grow lights and the accompanying 
electricity theft. Associated indoor mold issues... gone.

This leads to a problem when trying to regulate it. The reason why it 
is feasible to regulate alcohol and tobacco is because it's a bit 
tricky to produce/grow. It's not worth putting up with the hassle when 
the price in the store is so reasonable. Cannabis is too easy to grow 
so it can't be sold cheaply enough in stores to keep people from 
growing it themselves. Drug-running gangs would lose all interest.

Legalizing marijuana is not going to eliminate gangs, however. There 
are plenty of other illicit activities for gangs to get themselves 
dirty with after you eliminate the marijuana trade.

Sadly, by prohibiting cannabis to go after the narcotic marijuana we, 
as a society, have severely curtailed the growing of very useful hemp. 
Prior to marijuana's prohibition in the 1930s hemp fibers were being 
used to produce superior rope and fabric. One has to wonder how much 
oil could have been saved over the years by not producing oil-derived 
synthetic fibers.


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