Pubdate: Wed, 01 Dec 1999
Source: Comox Valley Record (CN BC)
Contact:  765 McPhee Ave./Box 3729, Courtenay, B.C., V9N 7P1
Fax: 250-338-5568
Author:   Norm Siefken


Re: "Swiss Plan not working" (Fri. 19 Nov. 1999)

I would like to disagree with the intolerant position taken by Lois
Thompson of TREADS and the dubious "facts" she uses to support this
position. The group advocates "stiffer penalties" and seems overly
concerned about marijuana use.

TREADS should respect the fact that many British Columbians prefer
marijuana instead of legal alcohol. Members of our "cannabis culture"
have made a very healthy choice when compared to those who become
alcoholics. The only person ever killed by marijuana was the farm
worker who died when a large bale of hemp fell on his head. While
alcoholism brings violence and ruins families, marijuana use brings
peace and enlightenment to its users.

When 63 per cent of the population favors decriminalization then the
government has no business keeping the weed illegal one minute longer.
The fact that we have any marijuana prohibition laws at all raises
serious questions. Why is it OK for one man to fry his brain every day
with alcohol while the occasional pot smoker is labeled a criminal?

Why should anyone respect these hypocritical laws? The Lancet - a
leading medical journal-stated in 1995 that "the use of cannabis,
even long term use, is not harmful to health." We now know that
ordinary table salt is more toxic than marijuana.

We must let adults decide for themselves what is best for

Marijuana should be legalized immediately and regulated like booze.
The war-on-drugs is a costly and unsuccessful crusade which must be

I am employed as a Medical Radiation Technologist at three Lower
Mainland hospitals.

Norm Siefken
X-ray Specialist
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