The Centre for Addictions and Mental Health estimates the cost of marijuana prohibition is over $400 million per year (you could throw a hell of a Canada Day party with that money). Even some Conservatives want to legalize pot, including a former Tory MP.
And yet Harper continues to characterize legalization/decriminalization supporters as depraved ghouls intent on corrupting your children (if they don’t eat them first). One Tory MP distributed this hilarious flyer in his riding, pretty much accusing anyone who wants to legalize weed of being a Disney villain.
Even though pot is safer and less addictive than alcohol and tobacco, and alcohol prohibition was a total failure (see Sleeman ads), Harper continues to ignore the double standard. He said in one speech that “Sir John A. spoke to British Columbians about the things that matter… about a Canada united and strong, about economic growth, not grow-ops.” Um… maybe Sir John didn’t talk about grow-ops because he was too busy getting hammered off a drug that happened to be legal (alcohol).
In an earlier interview, Harper said that “When people are buying from the drug trade, they are not buying from their neighbour. They are buying from international cartels that are involved in unimaginable violence and intimidation and social disaster and catastrophe all across the world.” Which is a GREAT argument FOR legalization. If it was legal people wouldn’t have to buy it from criminals anymore! It would be bought from a legal dispensary staffed by a rad middle aged women named Doris who knows you better than you know yourself.
There are SO MANY MORE reasons to end pot prohibition:
- It has never been scientifically proven that pot is a “gateway” drug, though it has been proven that alcohol is a gateway to regrettable karaoke performances… and on a more serious note, the overwhelming effect of violent alcohol related offences, specifically against women.
- Regulating marijuana ensures that it’s safe (i.e. not laced), which is much more of a leap of faith (or lack-there of) when your dealer also moonlights as a strip club bouncer. Sorry Steve, it’s nothing personal.
- Legalizing marijuana doesn’t lead to increased use, and Canadians already smoke more weed per capita than places where pot use has been decriminalized, legalized or liberalized like Germany, Portugal, Belgium, Italy, Jamaica and the Netherlands.
- Our own police chiefs say criminal charges for marijuana possession are a waste of time. In 2013 alone police charged people for nearly 60,000 marijuana offences.
- Not only that, in a 2013 study it was estimated that the Canadian government loses $7.5 billion per year in tax revenue because marijuana is illegal, and spend $500 million annually on its enforcement. WHAT!?!
- A government commission recommended the repeal of marijuana prohibition 42 years ago! Which happens to be the year Enter the Dragon and Disney’s Robin Hood came out… Coincidence? I think not!!