Consequences of legalizing marijuana


I refer to another one of Arthur Topham’s letters that appeared in your paper on March 11.  I was happy to see MLA Bob Simpson’s response to it.

Mr. Topham claims that close to 90 per cent of Canadians favour the decriminalizaton of marijuana, but he supplies nothing to back up this percentage, so can only imagine that it is a figment of his imagination.

Mr. Topham’s letter relative to decriminalization is both naive and tends to overlook the complexities.  If the use of marijuana is decriminalized, it stands to reason that the use of it will accelerate.  Who will supply the increase in demand, other than, and mainly the illicit growers, who will reap even more profits?  To think that most people are going to bother having a little patch of pot growing in their back yard is a fallacy.  Considering the price of tobacco, where are all those tobacco patches?

Then I suppose Mr. Topham, as others have suggested, might also be of the opinion that the government should legalize the sale fo marijuana, and reap millions upon millions in additional taxes.  I can only suppose that if the government ever got involved in taxing marijuana, the price would skyrocket, like the price of tobacco and liquor.  The illicit growers could sell their product for even more than they do now, and still undercut the government.  To suggest that the decriminalization of marijuana will eliminate the involvement of organized crime is another fallacy.

I will refer Mr. Topham to a letter that appeared in The Province on March 17 last, by one Marc Paquette.  He states as follows: ‘Only a minority of legal and licensed medical marijuana users can afford to buy Health Canada’s marijuana grown by PPS-Cannasat, which sells for $150 per 30 grams, plus 13 per cent HST and shipping.  I have a medical marijuana prescription of 10 grams per day, so I couldn’t afford the goverment pot.’  That should explain what the sale of marijuana might cost under goverment control.

So we decriminalize marijuana, which would mean that the police would still be involved with drivers who are driving while impaired by this drug.  Oops!  Mr. Topham has previously referred to it as “a benign herb”!

Parents and employers would have to impose tight restrictions on their children and employees.  In the case of an employer for instance, the use of his vehicles, operation of heavy equipment and so on, be it operating a chainsaw in the woods. What about all those large trucks coming at you on the highway?  Would the normal coffee and smoke break now become a “Whacky Tobacky” break, and then back to work?  And that smoke with coffee before heading for work in the morning, a toke of marijuana?

Mr. Topham, who attended the Woodstock Festival years back, and I suspect would be one of the ‘Flower Children’ of that era, has spent 44 years of his life attempting to enlighten the populace.  I happen to be one of the 10 per cent (according to him) that disagree!                                                                 Paul Drescher                                                     Kersley