Pubdate: Wed, 15 Feb 2012
Source: Province, The (CN BC)
Copyright: 2012 Postmedia Network Inc.
Author: Ian Austin
Bookmark: (Decrim/Legalization)
Cited: Stop the Violence BC


Four former B.C. attorneys-general have added their authoritative 
voices to the call for the decriminalization of marijuana.

Former B.C. premier Ujjal Dosanjh, along with Geoff Plant, Colin 
Gabelmann and Graeme Bowbrick, have added their years of experience 
as the province's top legal authority to a growing movement toward 

"As former B.C. attorneys-general, we are fully aware that British 
Columbia lost its war against the marijuana industry many years ago," 
write the four, who collectively served as attorneys-general from 
1991 to 2005, a critical period of time when public attitudes toward 
pot smoking changed dramatically.

"The case demonstrating the failure and harms of marijuana 
prohibition is airtight.

"The evidence? Massive profits for organized crime, widespread gang 
violence, easy access to illegal cannabis for our youth, reduced 
community safety and significant and escalating costs to taxpayers." 
Dosanjh and company say the province is wrong to support Prime 
Minister Stephen Harper's bid to have mandatory minimum sentences for 
minor pot charges.

"These misguided prosecutions will further strain an already clogged 
system, without reducing cannabis prohibition-related violence or 
rates of cannabis use," write the quartet to Premier Christy Clark 
and NDP Leader Adrian Dix.

"It is time B.C. politicians listened to the vast majority of B.C. 
voters who support replacing cannabis prohibition in favour of a 
strictly regulated legal market for adult marijuana use."

Four former Vancouver mayors - Larry Campbell, Mike Harcourt, Sam 
Sullivan and Philip Owen - made a similar call for pot 
decriminalization late last year.
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom