Pubdate: Wed, 13 Nov 2002
Source: Daily News, The (CN NS)
Copyright: 2002 The Daily News
Author: John Cook


To the editor:

Re: C. Gwendolyn Landolt's letter about the Senate special committee's 
report on legalizing marijuana (Senator Blowing Smoke On Pot, Letters, The 
Daily News, Nov. 2):

After reading the whole report, I can verify the facts of Landolt's letter 
are incorrect.

She says 80 per cent of the witnesses appearing before the committee 
supported liberal laws on marijuana. I would like to point out that the 
witness list broke down as follows. The police had 24 representatives 
(about 10 per cent); other government groups (including the Health, 
Corrections, and Canada Customs and Revenue departments) had 37 
representatives (about. 16 per cent); university, community services and 
addiction services had 83 representatives (about 34 per cent); and there 
were 77 individuals (about 30 per cent) followed by 10 per cent that 
included lawyers, etc.

As the law has remained the same, it would seem reasonable that police and 
other government officials (10 per cent and 16 per cent, respectively) 
would not favour liberal laws. The remaining 73 per cent (including other 
categories) would also not all support more liberal laws. It is probably 
closer to 60 to 70 per cent in favour of more liberal laws, which reflects 
general-public numbers. The committee was an open forum, so anyone could 

Second, Landolt says: "Yet (the committee) produced a four-volume, 600-page 
report, researched, written, translated into the two official languages, 
and printed and bound in less than three months."

As for the research, the committee has 40 people on staff for 
administration, research, etc. A research report was first completed in 
October 1998, and all others finished or processed until June 2002 totalled 
26 reports in all. Other reports, research papers and studies used by the 
committee totaled 368.

I ask all to take the time to read Landolt's testimony to the Senate 
committee on June 7, in Windsor, Ont. It's a short read; very repetitive, 
with no clear response to any of the committee's questions.

I will not continue with the actual facts, or rebuttal to Landolt's letter, 
as anyone who reads the whole report would think twice before they pick and 
choose quotes out of context.

To answer Landolt's question on who will gain from these proposed changes, 
the answer is: all Canadians.

John Cook

Director, Halifax Outlet

Cannabis Buyers Club of Canada 
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