Pubdate: Thu, 22 Dec 2011 Source: StarPhoenix, The (CN SN) Copyright: 2011 The StarPhoenix Contact: http://www.canada.com/saskatoonstarphoenix/letters.html Website: http://www.canada.com/saskatoonstarphoenix/ Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/400 Author: Ken Sailor SICKENING CHANGE Re: Changes in works for marijuana laws (SP, Dec. 10). I find the proposed changes to regulations extremely annoying. Eliminating the designated grower program in favour of commercial marijuana is cruel and unnecessary. Consider MS sufferer Michael Greenblatt, as discussed in the article. He was desperate for relief after 20 years of taking toxic pharmaceuticals that were becoming less effective at controlling his spasms and nausea. What a miracle that marijuana helps him, and how wonderful that his son can grow it for him. The elimination of designated growers will make it illegal for Greenblatt to buy marijuana from anyone except Prairie Plant Systems, at $5 per gram. Since he uses 10 grams a day, this will cost $50 daily, or $18,250 a year. Will our cash-strapped health-care system have to pick up this exorbitant cost for something that a loved one could grow with little more care than required for lettuce? The health minister says designated growers are being eliminated because "We have heard complaints and concerns from many fire departments and many mayors." Concerns about legal, designated growers, really? Don't these municipalities have building codes? Or are concerns about illegal growers being used as one more way to make it difficult for medical marijuana users to get relief ? Our courts have repeatedly ruled that marijuana laws and regulations have unnecessarily prevented sick people from getting something that helps them. Marijuana prohibition is a failure and a farce. The government must stop harming the desperately sick, based on its frustration at its inability to stop recreational use. Ken Sailor Saskatoon - --- MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.