Sheriff, Former Mayor ADD Elbow Grease to Petition
Medical marijuana dispensaries and grow operations would be banned
from Fort Collins under an ordinance proposed by a group of city
residents that includes Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith.
Supporters of the ban are expected to start collecting signatures for
petitions backing the proposal as soon as Friday, city officials say.
Proponents would have 60 days to gather the signatures of 4,214
registered Fort Collins voters to get the proposed ordinance before
the City Council. If the petitions are picked up Friday from the city
clerk's office, the deadline would be July 19.
[continues 677 words]
The medical marijuana era in Windsor is over.
Both of the town's dispensaries, In Harmony Wellness Center and A New
Dawn Wellness Clinic, closed their doors for good on Sunday, in
keeping with an ordinance passed by the town board in January.
"We checked for compliance this morning and both businesses did
comply," said Windsor Police Chief John Michaels.
Medical marijuana first became an issue in December 2009 when the town
board learned that in addition to In Harmony Wellness Center, which
had opened in June 2009, and A New Dawn Wellness Clinic, which opened
earlier that December, there were six other dispensaries in the
process of opening in Windsor.
[continues 160 words]
I seriously doubt that any attempt at "prison reform" will accomplish
anything. Canadians have no stomach for punishment of criminals
preferring "rehabilitation." We have a drug problem in Canada and the
United States because we tolerate it. Singapore on the other hand does
I used to travel frequently to Singapore. The arrival card made out by
every passenger clearly stated that the penalty for drug trafficking
was death -that was not a joke. Upon conviction, punishment is swift,
severe and certain. Singapore has shown that this policy is very
effective at almost eliminating crime. Our drug and crime problems
will continue as long as we continue to tolerate them.
I'm not sure I understand Margaret Wente's point (Is Addiction Really
A Disease? - May 17). If most hard drug addicts eventually find the
resolve to kick their habit, thus rendering Insite, as she suggests,
useful only for "the hardest of the hard cases" (those with additional
psychiatric disorders and few meaningful alternatives), and if it's
also true (as both sides in the debate acknowledge) that the
facility's services have significantly reduced fatal overdoses among
this core group of users, shouldn't that fact alone be reason enough
to keep it open?
Re Is Addiction Really a Disease? (May 17): Margaret Wente's analogy
of addiction and cancer is incorrect. She makes reference to the high
"recovery rates" of doctors and pilots. As one of these physicians, I
would like to point out I am not recovered but in recovery. The
disease is chronic and all too often fatal. It requires continuing
treatment, most commonly in the form of regular attendance at 12-step
meetings. To suggest that this is not a disease begs the question as
to whether Ms. Wente believes the cure for anorexia is to simply eat
more or if getting over depression involves just thinking happy thoughts.
Queen's University, Kingston
Head Shop Owner Says He Was Born to Sell Salvia, Marijuana
Paraphernalia and Psychedelic Party Clothing
Name: Andre Levert
Occupation: Proprietor of Psychonaut (154 Prince Arthur E.)
Bio: This jolly Vieux Longueuil family man has been enthralled by the
wonderful world of reefer ever since he was a child growing up in small town
southern Ontario. "I was 13, riding in the car with my dad listening to this
report on Radio-Canada that was really exaggerating the negatives about pot,
when I went, 'Hey, this is something I need to try soon.'" Discovering "the
effects to be quite inter-esting," young Andre started researching the devil's
weed something fierce, delving into "the whole conspiracy behind its
prohibition, its history, its different effects etc" and today credits his
youthful marijuana fixation for keeping him "out of all sorts of trouble. It
brought me to this peaceful culture when I so easily could've been drawn to
darker things." Although he studied to become and eventually did labour for
a brief period as a health care attendant, Andre says his heart and soul
have always belonged to the "marijuana counter-culture," so in 2003, after
managing another area head shop for several years, he decided to go whole
hog and open his own clothing/paraphernalia outlet, the inimitable
Psychonaut at 154 Prince Arthur E. He drives a pragmatic 2006 Toyota
[continues 379 words]
Whether Mexico's impending socio-political collapse has less or more
to do with its President is a moot point (The Soul Of Mexico -
editorial, May 16). Mexico's probable destiny is to become a failed
state and so, a state without any soul at all.
One would think Mexico's neighbours might recall the lessons of their
own Prohibition era and adjust their outlook accordingly. As Canada
and the U.S. struggled for their souls in the 1930s, commodities once
deemed socially corroding were properly understood as merchandise more
in need of better distribution-management than ever-more-robust law
enforcement. It took only a change of outlook, and then policy, to
make gangsters gentlemen as their children became bankers, politicians
and movie moguls.
[continues 59 words]
Galas often feature inspiring testimonials from beneficiaries right
before guests are asked to open their checkbooks. When a fund-raiser
benefits a drug rehabilitation program, dinner sometimes resembles an
Alcoholics Anonymous meeting.
Speakers at Caron Treatment Centers' annual gala Wednesday introduced
themselves thus: "Hi, I'm so-and-so, and I'm an alcoholic." Cue crowd:
The gala at Cipriani 42nd Street raised funds for scholarships to
Caron with a special focus on supporting musicians with addiction.
[continues 133 words]
Roger Christie is a political prisoner. Rapist, murders, thieves and
all manner of violent criminals get bail. Christie has no criminal
record, has served his country honorably in the army, and has operated
openly, inviting the police in any time they wanted. After over two
years of wire taps, surveillance and video by 13 agencies, there is
not a bit of evidence that backs up the slander Iolani posted [May 18:
"A Closer Look"].
If any of that were true why didn't the government charge him with
endangering minors? Where is her evidence? The police were monitoring
the THC ministry 24/7 for years, and she is saying the police saw
minors regularly getting marijuana and did nothing. Does any
reasonable person believe that? The police have many faults, but if
minors were involved they would have acted much sooner. I have been to
the ministry several times and known Christie for 20 years, and I can
say what Iolani posted is not true.
[continues 353 words]
Perhaps it is a sign of the weakness of the local economy, but
businesspeople young and old are eyeing the Rhode Island marijuana
business as potentially very lucrative perhaps more so than, say,
But the rush to open these "compassion centers," at least officially
to be marketed to sick people who seek the pain-relieving qualities of
marijuana, has been considerably faster than federal officials'
acceptance. The latest sign of their skepticism came a couple of weeks
ago, when U.S. Atty. Peter Neronha said rather ominously that he
considered that the three pot dispensaries so far tentatively approved
by the Rhode Island Health Department would be large-scale, for-profit
pot production centers in violation of federal law. One of them,
Summit Medical Compassion Center, in Warwick, plans to be serving
8,000 patients and taking in $25 million in revenue by 2013.
[continues 175 words]
Mesa, Ariz. -- I'm writing about a recent Journal-Standard article
(Police beat: Freeporter charged with drug possession) which ran in
the May 16 edition.
I am wondering who is the victim? It was less than 15 grams of
cocaine, and was probably for his own use.
Even if he intended to sell some or all of it, there was still no
victim. In a drug transaction there are willing buyers and willing
sellers. Both walk away happy unless one or both get arrested.
[continues 163 words]
This matter is far more complex than Margaret Wente makes out. Indeed,
the logic she uses to de-medicalize addiction could be used to
position adult-onset diabetes as a matter of choice (lifestyle) and
not an illness.
As the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse states: "Addiction is ...
considered a brain disease because drugs change the brain - they
change its structure and how it works. These brain changes can be long
lasting, and can lead to the harmful behaviours seen in people who
[continues 93 words]
I've often wondered if Margaret Wente's predilection to writing
controversial columns is an addiction or a condition within her "power
Angus Campbell, Halifax
With regard to Roberta Helming's May 6 column, the drug war is largely
a war on marijuana smokers. In 2009, there were 858,405 marijuana
arrests in the United States, almost 90 percent for simple possession.
At a time when state and local governments are laying off police,
firefighters and teachers, this country continues to spend enormous
public resources criminalizing Americans who prefer marijuana to
martinis. The end result of this ongoing culture war is not
necessarily lower rates of use.
[continues 89 words]
American prisons are bursting with harmless pot smokers serving life
sentences. Our PM has openly stated that he would privatize
Corrections Canada, and has vowed to pour money into the institution
with his new majority mandate, taking money away from education and
health care. No one has ever smoked a joint and done a drive-by
shooting, or smoked a joint and then raped their daughter. To imprison
anyone for smoking a joint is despotic - no pun intended.
Ricky L. McLean, Strathroy, Ont.
Margaret Wente provides not only a simplistic view of a complex issue,
but an irrelevant argument in the debate about whether or not
Vancouver's supervised drug injection site, Insite, should exist.
Enlightened public discourse on addictions needs to incorporate both
the complexity of the problem and multiple channels through which
behaviour change occurs.
As Ms. Wente asserts, many people are able to quit drugs and quit
smoking (some "cold turkey," others through counselling or
nicotine-replacement therapies), just as some people are able to
mitigate the effects of diabetes and heart disease through diet and
[continues 89 words]