Pubdate: Sat, 20 May 2017
Source: Telegram, The (CN NF)
Copyright: 2017 The Telegram
Author: Russell Chafe
Page: B5


Marijuana will soon be legal in Newfoundland and Labrador. Among other
things, it will no longer be against the law to grow up to four plants
at a time in your house. Anyone with a green thumb could produce about
six pounds a year. In today's market that's a value of almost $50,000!

This unregulated marijuana will flood our streets. This alone negates
any argument that "The marijuana we are buying from government
dispensers is tightly regulated," because who is going to pay $30 to
$40 a gram from our government dealers when they can buy unregulated
marijuana from the thousands of want to be entrepreneurs who will sell
it for less?

Secondly, the Mexican cartels sell their marijuana for about $40 to
$80 a kilogram. Latest reports tell us that because of the
legalization in parts of America, demand has dropped and they are now
only getting about $30 a kilogram. Reports also tell us that if it
slips below $25 a kilogram the marijuana business is Mexico will crash.

Why is this a problem? Well I can't say for sure, but it is highly
unlikely the drug lords in Mexico or the drug dealers in Newfoundland
are going to hang up their gardening tools and go straight. Facts are,
they are feverishly working to produce cheaper opioids and bring them
to market. With all the competition from the government and every Tom,
Dick and Harry growing and selling their own crop, the drug dealers in
our city will need another drug to sell. Our streets will be flooded
with much harder drugs, including fentanyl and cocaine. This is
exactly what is happening now.

Our government solution? Give away Narcan for free? Come on! Our
government is only interested in the cash cow they think marijuana may
be, with little regard for the health and lives of the most vulnerable
part of society, our youth and our weak.

And what about driving while impaired by marijuana? This is
essentially impossible right now to enforce. A roadside saliva test
can pick up weed but can't tell how long ago it was smoked. With
consent - which is highly unlikely - roadside blood work or urine
tests can be administered, but the results from this will take weeks,
not moments, as with a breathalyzer. Bottom line: there is no way to
prove or enforce any law regarding driving wasted.

What about the smell? The smell of tobacco is short-lived. The smell
of marijuana will linger for hours, permeating your entire house, your
car and your neighbourhood. So much for open doors or windows in summer.

Parents who grew up in the 1970s, '80s and '90s who think it's not a
dangerous drug need to be re-educated. The weed you smoked then and
what is out there now are two different drugs. The
tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is up to 40 times stronger and for the
first time weed has become a hallucinogenic drug. Need to be
convinced? Try some of the paralysis weed circulating in our city.

A psychiatrist will tell you marijuana can awaken schizophrenia, a
devastating mental illness that may otherwise stay dormant. The
Canadian Psychiatric Association has reported that marijuana can have
very damaging effects on the developing mind, a mind that doesn't
fully mature till age 25, yet our government is entertaining the idea
of making it legal for anyone 19 - maybe even 18 to purchase it. I am
all for medicinal marijuana prescribed by a doctor, but unenforceable
regulations spells real trouble.

Any comparison to marijuana and alcohol doesn't really make sense. One
beer won't hurt you, while any amount of marijuana could destroy your
life. Impairment by alcohol is easily tested, unlike marijuana.

It will cause havoc in the workplace and our schools, as proving
people are stoned will be almost impossible.

We are creating a monster here, a monster our government will have
zero control over.

Stop drinking the Trudeau Kool-aid, people - we should say no to
marijuana in Newfoundland and Labrador and see what happens in the
rest of Canada first.

Russell Chafe

Mount Pearl
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