Pubdate: Tue, 20 May 2003
Source: Montreal Gazette (CN QU)
Copyright: 2003 The Gazette, a division of Southam Inc.
Author: Manish Patwari


The federal government's plan to fine small-time marijuana users "as little 
as $100" under soon-to-be introduced decriminalization legislation 
(Gazette, May 13) is disappointing news. It would be nice to see outright 
legalization of marijuana use in this country, thereby taking an archaic 
law off the books.

Both alcohol and tobacco are far more harmful than marijuana, and each is 
responsible for killing more than 50,000 North Americans annually. It is a 
travesty of logic, then, that the relatively innocuous drug marijuana 
remains illegal or semi-illegal.

As for the U.S. government putting pressure on Canada to abandon plans to 
decriminalize marijuana, it is hypocrisy in bright shades. If the U.S. 
government truly cared about the welfare of its citizens, it would try to 
amend its constitution to ban guns, not marijuana. Guns, after all, are 
responsible for the deaths of anywhere between 10,000 to 20,000 Americans 
every year.

Frank Zappa once quipped that the U.S. is a nation of laws - badly written 
and randomly enforced. There is no need to follow the U.S. government's 
stance on marijuana.

Manish Patwari

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