Pubdate: Mon, 29 Aug 2016
Source: Calgary Herald (CN AB)
Page: A9
Copyright: 2016 Postmedia Network
Author: James Currie


Re: "Drug scourge devastating our city and nothing is being done," 
Chris Nelson, Opinion, Aug. 25.

Thanks for Chris Nelson's excellent column, which raises important issues.

Firstly, it is outrageous that it has taken 17 months for ASIRT to 
release its findings in the shooting death of Anthony Heffernan. I do 
understand why prosecutors declined a criminal prosecution of the 
policeman involved, as success would require proof beyond a reasonable doubt.

On the other hand, no such requirement is necessary for city police 
to immediately fire the officer. If CPS wants to "protect and serve," 
this should happen immediately.

More importantly, there is simply no case against legalizing drugs. 
Should that happen, it would immediately shut down the market for the 
street pushers, and make it less easy for our young people to start 
out on this potentially fatal course. Portugal has not seen an 
increase indrug use under a similar policy.

If some do end up with this addiction, at least they would have 
access to safe, uncontaminated drugs. In controlled doses, MDMA is 
probably not dangerous, but illegally produced ecstasy is. The other 
benefit following de-stigmatizing addicts, would be the provision of 
safe needles, and a consequent reduction in the number of cases of 
hepatitis C and HIV.

James Currie, MD, Calgary
- ---
MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom