HTTP/1.0 200 OK Content-Type: text/html Marijuana Activists Will Gather At MP Offices
Pubdate: Tue, 11 Dec 2007
Source: Sundre Round Up (CN AB)
Copyright: 2007 Sundre Round Up Publishing Ltd.
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Canada)
Bookmark: (Decrim/Legalization)


An exciting new grass-roots political campaign is beginning to grow
across Canada. In response to the Americanization of Canadian drug
policy by the Conservative Party of Canada, ordinary Canadians are
standing up to ask a simple question: Why?

On November 20th, 2007 the Conservative government of Canada
introduced Bill C-26, imposing mandatory minimum jail sentences for
cannabis (marijuana) offences in an attempt to appear "tough" on crime.

In reality, the government's own experts have said time and again -
most recently in the Department of Justice analysis accompanying the
CPC's other "get tough" crime bill - that these extreme measures
simply don't work.

This American-style legislation has been met with sweeping
condemnation from experts and members of the public across Canada. At
noon on December 17, 2007, ordinary Canadians will be gathering at
their local Member of Parliament's office to ask their MPs to
filibuster and if necessary vote against Bill C-26 and to force them
to justify any continued support for the failed and harmful policy of
marijuana prohibition.

"Mandatory minimums have already failed to curb drug use and sales in
the US and simply ended up filling their jails to brimming with
non-violent marijuana offenders," said Kirk Tousaw, a Vancouver
criminal defence lawyer that has practiced on both sides of the
border. "Worse, the evidence on marijuana is pretty unequivocal:
prohibition is causing more harm than it prevents. So the question for
Parliament is why? Why does marijuana prohibition have the support of
the House of Commons?"

Tousaw, whose UBC Master's in Law thesis examined Canadian cannabis
policy, said: "Cannabis and cannabis policy has been studied
extensively and thoroughly by our government and many others.

"The conclusions are unequivocal. Prohibition doesn't reduce use or
supply. Prohibition supports organized crime by providing criminals
with constant revenues. Prohibition creates dangerous black markets
with no controls and causes people to grow marijuana in suburban
basements instead of on farms and in greenhouses.

"And marijuana itself is far safer than virtually all of our legal
drugs, including alcohol, tobacco, prescription and over-the-counter
medications. The public understands this perfectly - 63% support
legalization. Yet Parliament has ignored all of this. Why?"

To find out the answer, on December 17, 2007 Canadians will meet at
MP's offices across Canada. Starting at noon, these citizens will ask
their representatives to meet and explain what the MP's marijuana
position is.

If the MP supports prohibition, he or she will be asked why. Event
organizer Jacob Hunter put it this way: "We want them to answer a
simple question: Why? We want to see the evidence they used to
formulate their carefully considered position. We want to know why
they still support the failure that is prohibition."
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MAP posted-by: Larry Seguin