Pubdate: Tue, 19 Feb 2002
Source: Abbotsford News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2002 Hacker Press Ltd.
Author: Jon Fulford
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Canada)


Editor, The News:

I attended the town hall meeting that Chuck Strahl and Dr. Keith Martin 
held on Marijuana a week ago today and I was shocked at the results.

The so-called expert on addiction that Chuck brought in had a completely 
one-sided view that nearly caused an outbreak.

I made a brief comment on how I felt decriminalization shouldn't include 
fines, and that I'm tired of the RCMP taking a political stance in pot issues.

The pot community feels the RCMP are simply involved in too many scandals 
and illegal acts to retain the confidence of British Columbians, especially 
after the bust in Nova Scotia last week on dope dealer and "RCMP drug 
expert" Const. Joseph Daniel Ryan, 31, who was noted for having "a nose for 
sniffing out drug busts."

Before that, the head D.A.R.E. officer of Victoria - Const. Barry Schneider 
- - died of a heroin overdose.

On top of that, the RCMP are taking orders from the American DEA, and we 
have had to put up with the never-to-be-forgotten images of Sgt. Pepper at 

I also learned on CBC's fifth estate that the RCMP let Dennis Dober, a 
Sicamous crack cocaine dealer with a 10-year history of ruining lives, go 
scot-free in exchange for information on a pot grower.

I am not trying to say the RCMP aren't doing their job; it's just that 
sometimes they go "beyond the call of duty."

The worst part about sitting through the conference was listening to Dr. 
Keith Martin convince people that the American RICO laws are a good idea. 
RICO laws make you just as guilty knowing someone grows pot as the person 
growing the stuff.

The addiction expert at the conference felt that pot can keep you high for 
months after smoking because it stays in your fat cells, which is untrue. 
Even though they may have similar names, the psychoactive THC (Delta-9-THC) 
is different from the metabolites (for instance, 11-OH-THC and 11-nor) that 
your body breaks down into the latter, and will not get you stoned.

The worst pot fact I heard was that "there is more THC in cannabis today 
then in the 60s;" which is true, but it is actually better for you to smoke 
because there is more THC and less excess "material."

The excess material is what damages your lungs.

Also, being more potent, you have to smoke less to achieve the same result 
then less-potent pot.

Last but not least, I was disenchanted with this so-called expert stating 
that marijuana was a gateway drug, when in fact, for every 104 people who 
have used marijuana, there is only one regular user of cocaine and less 
than one heroin addict.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I don't blame anyone for hating pot 
after years of DEA brainwashing and associating pot with criminals.

I applaud Chuck and Keith for making a move in the right direction, but 
this bill is fake and will do nothing for marijuana users.

In fact, I feel it is a convenient publicity catalyst and a way for Uncle 
Sam to influence us.

It comes just after George W. Bush's nearly $4 million Super Bowl ads 
associating pot smokers with terrorists.

Before you decide to hate pot, remember that Canada has always thought 
differently about the past prohibition of alcohol, and we provided a safe 
haven for African-Americans when the Americans practised slavery.

Prohibition didn't work in the past and it doesn't work now.

No one has ever died from using cannabis, which makes it safer than 
aspirin, caffeine and most other non-prescription drugs.

Jon Fulford, Chilliwack
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