Pubdate: Fri, 04 Dec 2009
Source: Intelligencer, The (CN ON)
Copyright: 2009, Osprey Media Group Inc.
Author: Kirk Tousaw


The laundry list of alleged harms resulting from indoor  cannabis
production that Det-Const. Marcotte laid out  was certainly
frightening. Accepting that these harms  are, in fact, accurate and
not simply overblown  fear-mongering, the question that must be asked
is:  What do we do about it?

We've tried the prohibition route: police raids,  arrests,
prosecutions, jailing. The problem is that  there always seem to be
more people willing to take the  risk of jail to fill the demand for
this plant. Police  simply can't keep up.

Indeed, the very existence of suburban marijuana  production is a
result of the need to hide from police  detection. This means our
current approach creates a  vicious cycle: growers use basements and
electricity  theft to hide from police, who bust growers which leads
to more growers taking their place in different houses.

And since our appetite for marijuana is quite high (2  million
Canadians are weekly consumers), the situation  isn't likely to change
unless we change our policies.

Now imagine if marijuana production was not illegal.  The incentive to
grow in basements would immediately  disappear. Marijuana would be
grown in greenhouses and  on farms -- just like every other commercial
crop. No  more destroyed houses, no more mouldy air "blowing into
your kid's window."

Aren't those goals we all share, regardless of how we  feel about
marijuana use?

Kirk Tousaw

Executive Director,

Beyond Prohibition Foundation 
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