Pubdate: Sun, 11 Aug 2013
Source: Province, The (CN BC)
Copyright: 2013 Postmedia Network Inc.
Author: Barbara Ewart


When I read the letter by Ivy Lam of the Christian Social Concern 
Fellowship I am reminded that outdated and, in many instances, just 
plain wrong information persists.

Though a myriad of studies have shown that an individual makes the 
conscious choice to use other drugs, the erroneous notion of 
marijuana being a "gateway drug" persists.

If it were true that pot leads to probable further drug 
experimentation, many friends and I would long ago have succumbed to 

Though I no longer smoke, many of my friends still do on occasion.

We have had careers and families and enjoyed life as most do. We are 
all nearing or at retirement.

Oh, and most of us have been lifelong teetotallers. Experience is the 
best teacher. All the studies in the world can't alter what more than 
50 years of life clearly demonstrates.

The "war on drugs" has been an abject failure.

Thirty years ago, instead of focusing on hard drugs, America and 
Canada toughened laws against marijuana.

As a result, marijuana growing moved indoors.

We now have gang-controlled, violence-ridden grow-ops that create 
dangerous, often life threatening, fire-safety hazards.

This situation didn't exist before.

A new approach is needed, which alleviates the overcrowded judicial 
system for possession of small amounts of pot and addresses how 
marijuana can be controlled and taxed.

Stop this insanity and do the smart thing for a change.

Barbara Ewart, Maple Ridge
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