Pubdate: Fri, 27 Jun 2003
Source: Lindsay This Week (CN ON)
Copyright: 2003 Lindsay This Week
Author: Bruce Symington


To the editor:

It is refreshing to see the Ontario chief constables can still be shocked, 
as stated in the letter published in the June 20 Lindsay This Week from 
Chief Thomas Kaye.

It is also somewhat disconcerting that he fails to differentiate between 
the harms of cannabis prohibition and those of the herb itself.

All of the "harms" he quotes, the children's access, the criminal element's 
involvement, and the violence which results from competition between the 
bad guys, are the result of the prohibition, not the herb.

I find it interesting too that he uses some very slippery language to 
support the continuation of cannabis prohibition.

His statement regarding highway carnage caused each year by impaired 
drivers, no doubt a reference to alcohol impairment, somehow slides into 
the issue of roadside testing for cannabis consumption.

His statement that it is not illegal to smoke cannabis in public places is 
a questionable claim to make.

It is also worthwhile to note that, while he states that society must 
resolve these issues to reduce violence resulting from pot grow operations 
he does not state what that resolution should be.

The inference is, that we should return to the former system of arrest and 
penalize, when in fact, if we were to follow the plan laid out by Senator 
Nolin's committee, we would end the grow operations, reduce the 
availability to children, end the violence, and free the police up to 
devote their time to other, more important issues, like the domestic 
violence which results from alcohol consumption, and the white collar 
crimes which rob people through chicanery.

I wish the police would stop trying to regain their unjustifiable power 
over pot smokers, and instead work hard to enforce those laws which will 
have a beneficial effect on quality of life for the rest of us.

They should leave the discussion of what form the laws should take to the 
rest of society.

Bruce Symington

Medicine Hat, Alberta

You're right, they enforce the laws.
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