Pubdate: Fri, 04 Apr 2003
Source: North Island Weekender (CN BC)
Copyright: 2003 North Island Weekender
Author: Robert Saint Amour


We are being inundated with marihuana hysteria recently, the authorities in 
Surrey estimate 4,500 grow-ops with revenues in excess of $2.5-billion, 
bigger than Jimmy Pattison, and all without the stigma of being a used car 

We are being told over and over how organized crime is controlling all the 
pot in the universe and how it is being traded for crack over the border. 
Who are these organized crime people? And why have I never met them?

We are not being told that a lot of people smoke pot and that a large 
amount of them grow it to avoid outside contacts. We grow pot in virtually 
every corner of British Columbia' cheap power, cops with better things to 
do and gorgeous summers will guarantee the consistent production of the 
best weed in the world.

And like American prohibition, which Canada greatly benefited from, a law 
becomes useless when the average, honest citizen disregards it.

There is no doubt that some criminals will and have gotten involved, making 
good the argument that we should legalize it sooner than later.

The average pot grower in BC is not making much money, if any. A lot are 
hopelessly addicted and smoke most of what they grow; they still drive VW 
vans and are completely harmless.

It is also quite uncommon to see a pothead use crack, these are two very 
distinct and separate worlds which are erroneously associated by the 
authorities and the media. Like beer, pot is here to stay and no amount of 
fear mongering is going to change that. It is time for Canada to set the 
tone on this issue and abolish the laws that most people simply don't want 
or care about.

Robert Saint Amour,
Campbell River
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MAP posted-by: Keith Brilhart