To the Editor,

Re: B.C. public health officers behind taxing, legalizing marijuana, Jan. 3.

Grow guide for marijuana beginners.

The Health Officers Council of British Columbia has taken a bold step by urging political leaders to take control of the cannabis trade.

Organized crime now has a monopoly on a $7-billion clandestine trade which spawns violence, murder and unsafe communities.

Every objective outcome measure shows us how badly prohibitionist policies have failed to reach their declared goals.

Today, marijuana is stronger in potency, more widely used by young people, and easier to obtain despite decades of repressive laws and enforcement tactics.

The health officers are not asking us to “give up” on regulating harmful drugs. They’re saying it’s time to control cannabis like we do a much deadlier drug tobacco.

Sales will be restricted from minors, quality control will be ensured, and every educational effort will be made to assist people to make healthy choices.

Given that fewer than ever Canadians are smoking tobacco, the ability of non-punitive policies to promote abstinence are apparent.

We don’t have to put people in jail to encourage conformity.

The B.C. health officers have the moral high ground over the federal minister of health. Leona Aglukkaq , like her predecessors, clings to prohibitionist policies with the support of her government.

Her position in the federal cabinet includes the authority to improve the health and safety of Canadians by developing effective measures for regulating the cannabis trade. She should exercise that power for the sake of all Canadians.

John Anderson

Criminology chairman

Vancouver Island University

News Hawk – 420 Warrior 420 MAGAZINE
Location: Vancouver B.C.
Source: Nanaimo News Bulletin (CN BC)
Author: John Anderson
Contact: [email protected]
Copyright: 2012 John Anderson
Website: Nanaimo News Bulletin