Pubdate: Thu, 24 Mar 2005
Source: Abbotsford Times (CN BC)
Copyright: 2005 The Abbotsford Times
Author: Russell Barth


Re: Marijuana grow operations

The U.S. consumes, and produces, more cannabis than any other country
in the world.

They need so much that they have to get about 41 per cent shipped in
from Mexico, and about two per cent from Canada.

It is their insatiable appetite for cannabis that is fueling the
grow-op problem in Canada.

The U.S. market throws billions in untaxed dollars at Canadians, then
scorns us for supplying their demands.

They give us no end of grief about pot, beef, lumber, missile defense
shields, Iraq and gay marriage, and then we are supposed to believe
that these bullies are actually our friends?

The responsibility for the misery caused by the "drug war," both in
Canada and around the world, falls squarely on the United States.

Maybe we should threaten them with border slowdowns if they don't do
something to lower the U.S. demand for pot.

If Canada were to legalize and regulate the cannabis-growing market,
then licensed growers and sellers would have to account for every gram
they produce and sell on the domestic market.

This would free up police resources and give them much more power of
investigation and enforcement.

It would also generate billions in annual tax revenue, which means we
could actually afford to spend more on increased border security to
keep cannabis from going south, and guns and cocaine from coming north.

Do we blame the bar or liquor store for someone's alcohol problem, the
sporting goods store for sports injuries, or blame the food companies
for someone's obesity or diabetes?

Then why should we be blamed for supplying the U.S. with a substance
that they just can't seem to get enough of?

Russell Barth, Educators For Sensible Drug Policy

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