Pubdate: Thu, 03 Apr 2014
Source: Alberni Valley News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2014 Stephen Fisher-Bradley
Author: Stephen Fisher-Bradley


To the Editor,

Twenty per cent of our city budget goes to policing. I think we get
good return on the dollar although we do need more focus on
prevention. Given the shortage of tax dollars and the many victims of
real crimes, I cannot support the idea of local police wasting
resources assisting prime minister Stephen Harper in the stealthy
criminalization of medical marijuana.

Eighty per cent of Canadians support medical marijuana. It was
legalized because the Supreme Court of Canada determined that access
to the medicines we need to avoid suffering is a basic human right,
protected by our Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Yes, the government can regulate, but not in a way that denies access.
Harper's new rules do exactly that.

It seems impossible for adequate supplies to be available by the end
of the month. Also, patients need particular kinds of marijuana for
their particular symptoms.

And there is no provision to delay the start date of the new rules for
those people, many on disability, who have invested thousands of
dollars in their home-based grow operations. They cannot afford to
forego the fruits of that investment and pay prices that may well be
higher than the black market.

They are businesses and should be treated with the usual consideration
when business rules change.

Now that the whole matter is before the courts again, I hope our local
police will take a wait and see attitude, and not waste resources
denying sick people their medicines.

That is Harper's agenda, and local police, whatever their uniform, are
answerable to the local community that hires them, not to anyone in

Stephen Fisher-Bradley,

Port Alberni 
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