Sunday, June 28, 2009

A Tale of Two Prohibitions

Am amazing short video showing the similarities between Alcohol and Cannabis Prohibition. Edited by Marijuana Man, music by the Tall Brothers.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Propaganda! From! SPAAAACE!!!

The International Space Station crew has addressed the people of Earth on International Anti-Drug Day.

From Russia Today:

"International Day against Drugs and Illicit Trafficking being marked around the globe, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime says one drug taker dies every hour in the world.

UNODC reports say approximately two hundred million people around the world are taking illicit drugs, with the number growing every year. This year the International Space Station crew have joined the anti-drug campaign and delivered a special message to the world."

"People of the Earth!

June 26 is International Anti-drug Effort and Illegal Drug Traffic Crusade Day.

Our planet looks so fragile from space, but a person who is killing himself by drugs is even more fragile. When a person takes narcotics and other drugs, inwardly, he thinks he can control the habit. However, sooner or later addiction takes over and destroys free will. This is seen over and over again, with the tragic loss of tens of thousands of lives. Narcotic drunkenness does not bring real freedom, or inspiration, nor does it expand the mind’s horizon. Drugs kill people and their loved ones. We, the cosmonauts and astronauts onboard the ISS, appeal to you: No drug addiction on Earth!"

Well actually Astronauts, it's the Prohibition of drugs and the Drug War that has harmed more people than drugs actually do. And we all know Cannabis is not physically addictive and has never killed anyone - ever. Prohibition on the other hand is directly responsible for too much death.

And I gotta call you out on your statements, because using Cannabis has brought me great inspiration AND expanded my "Mind's Horizon" - expanded it enough for me to realize the Drug War is a War on People and Drug Prohibition is an Epic FAIL.

If the late, great John Lennon was alive today I'm sure he'd say the same. Maybe you should come down from the Space Station and spend a little time in a Yellow Submarine.

And since when did you Cosmonauts get so savvy about International Drug Policy? We had no idea! It just goes to show us all that Propaganda isn't confined or limited to Earth - now it's being spewed from Space too!

The People of Earth aren't fooled... nice try though!

"Yellow Submarine" ~ The Beatles, 1966.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Marijuana Mamas - The Secret Lives of Cannabis Using Moms

Today on momlogic there was an amazing article called Marijuana Mamas!  It's hopeful to read that other Moms who are in the same situation I am in are "Coming out of the Cannabis Closet".

Us Moms fear the "Bad Mom" label - and we all know that "society" slaps that one on us for our choice of Cannabis as medicine and recreation. It's sad and wrong and we must try and change these views. Here is the comment I left:

I too, am a "Marijuana Mama" - and like so many other Moms, we face stigma over our cannabis use. We live with the fear of having our kids taken away or being incarcerated because we choose the safer choice - Cannabis - over addicting, zombifying, full of side effects prescription narcotics and alcohol.

Like other Moms have mentioned, using Cannabis ENABLES me to be the best Mom I can be. Before Cannabis I was a walking pharmacy, Big Pharma had a grip on my doctor & I had become a victim of the pharmaceutical industry. In early 2007 I had such a horrible reaction to a prescription medication that I ended up in the hospital, I honestly thought I was dying.

I had enough, chucked all those medicines and with the help of Cannabis I am now living a fuller, happier, healthier life. I take only 2 much needed prescription meds, (Update June 2012, I am now off of ALL prescription synthetic medications!) as opposed to my former 8-11. Using Cannabis helps me be a Hands-On Mom. Anyone who suffers from pain, in my case Degenerative Disc Disease, Crohn's Disease, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and chronic debilitating Migraines, knows the chaos it can cause and how much it affects our physical ability and daily lives. Not being able to physically participate in every day activities with our kids is heartbreaking and I am thankful that Cannabis is available to aid me. Whether it's kicking around a soccer ball in the park, or simply going for a nice leisurely walk with my boys, I value every second of it all!

Once my (two older) kids were mature enough to understand, we (my Husband and I) were completely honest with them. Responsibly educating them fully about Cannabis includes teaching them the history of Cannabis, which has been used by Humans since the beginning of Mankind. We reassured them I would never die because I used Cannabis because it is non-toxic and one of the safest medicines to use in the world. Cannabis has never killed anyone, ever.

I've also explained to them that while I could face incarceration for my use (don't be lulled into the illusion of being untouchable because you have a MMAR Card, there have been many legal users who have still been charged, for things as silly as a few plants over the limit, or vacationing in a place where it is still illegal) if it happened I would stand up in the face of my oppressors and fight for my Human Right to use this natural plant. They like having a Mom who is brave and willing to stand up for her beliefs.

While my Cannabis use is not for recreation, I vehemently defend the rights of others to use it if they prefer it over alcohol. My Husband and I rarely ever touch alcohol, maybe at a wedding we'll have some drinks, sometimes my Husband likes a cold beer in the summer. That's it. My Husband doesn't smoke pot - he feels no need or desire to.  He is thankful that I have finally found a medicine that not only helps my pain, but relaxes my mood and stress becomes not so much of a problem. Our lives are better for it, our marriage is better for it, and most of all, the quality of our children's' lives are better for it.

I believe that no government, no politician, has the right to tell me that I cannot use Cannabis for my health and happiness. I am an adult of sound mind and I have autonomy over my own body. It is my choice and I will not be bullied by parliament, especially when legal prescription medications are the fourth leading cause of death in Canada.

Canada and the US are always trumpeting "Freedom! We live free!" well, no we don't. Living free means being able to make choices for ourselves. Now please don't confuse this with crime. Crime is hurting others, crime is when there is a victim. I know that me eating a Cannabis Cookie for pain is of no consequence to anyone else.

Moms, we have to stand up and say, we want our Police to focus on REAL Crime that does affect our kids, child predators and abusers and pedophiles - parents should be demanding the Billions of dollars our governments spend every year on enforcing pot smokers instead be put towards catching child molesters.

Does it not disturb anyone that government would rather shovel money towards enforcement and incarceration, instead of education and programs that will help kids in our communities?

How many universities could have been built (with billions of tax payer dollars) while government has been busy building prisons? How many scholarships could have been paid for instead of the government spending your hard-earned money for enforcement, court, lawyer, incarceration and probation costs?

Prohibition also does not keep drugs out of our children's' hands. Prohibition leaves drugs to be controlled by the black market, and we all know that drug dealers don't ask for ID.

If our Government was truly serious about keeping drugs out of the hands of minors they would legalize and regulate the sale to adults. Any kid will tell you, they can get their hands on pot much more easily than they can get alcohol and cigarettes.

I am truly appalled that we have politicians that trample on our individual freedom and rights. They go under the guise of being "Tough on Crime". Well, I want our politicians to be SMART about crime, and focus their efforts on punishing those who truly are a danger to our society.

Us Moms, whether you smoke Cannabis or not, have to be vocal in this fight, we have to let our cries be heard - Cannabis users are not likely abusers, and we deserve the same freedom as everyone else to choose our method of medicine and recreation. And we deserve to have safer streets for our kids to play - gang and cartel free.

And please, we must denounce the Gateway Theory, if someone gets addicted to hard drugs, it's not because they may have used pot.

Marijuana Mamas, we must lead the way to ensure a better life for our kids, in countries that value our children and their futures. Prohibition must end and we can all do our part.

Please visit the website for LEAP - Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, this is a wonderful organization made up of Police, Judges, lawyers etc who have fought in the front lines of the War on Drugs. They will come to your town to speak and educate others about the failure and danger of Prohibition. Educating the public about the propaganda they have been fed all of their lives is necessary. Education is the key and we must spread it in the face of the yellow journalism that pervades the media when it comes to Cannabis.

Because of the illegality of Cannabis I don't use my real name, but I encourage other "Marijuana Mamas" to do what I have done - start telling the world about Cannabis, how Prohibition is draconian and immediately strips us of personal, individual freedom and brings more crime upon us - in a Blog, a Letter to the Editor of your local newspaper, Facebook, Twitter, wherever you can. More of us have to start speaking out if we are ever to change our draconian cannabis laws - laws that steal the freedom of every single one of us....

Pass It to The Left,

~Mary Jane Cannabian

" Mommy's Funny Medicine" - The World's First Children's Book about Medical Cannabis.

: February 15, 2010. The Tyra Banks Show has aired an episode "Soccer Mom Stoners"

I reposted this blog post in the comments, and also added the following:

p.s. For all you Judgy Judgerson's out there, I'd like you to think about this:

Poisonous Ingredient - Caffeine

Where Found * Certain soft drinks (such as Pepsi, Coke, Mountain Dew) * Certain teas * Chocolate, including hot chocolate drinks * Coffee * Over-the-counter stimulants that help you stay awake such as NoDoz, Vivarin, Caffedrine, and others Note: This list may not be all-inclusive. Symptoms of Overdose Symptoms in adults may include: * Breathing trouble * Confusion * Convulsions * Diarrhea * Dizziness * Fever * Hallucinations * In and out of consciousness * Increased thirst * Irregular heartbeat * Muscle twitching * Rapid heartbeat * Sleeping trouble * Urination - increased * Vomiting Symptoms in babies may include: * Muscles are very tense, then very relaxed * Nausea * Rapid, deep breathing * Rapid heartbeat * Shock * Tremors * Vomiting

I mention it because like with all things, moderation is the key. Unhealthy eating is a cause of many of our health problems.... do you think we should throw Moms' in jail because they eat too many Twinkies or hit the drive-thru at McDonald's every day after they drop the kids off at school? Criminalizing people for what they put into their bodies is insanity. Now if someone commits a crime while under the influence of a substance, like alcohol, NyQuil, Vicodin, Cannabis, etc. then by all means prosecute away, but jailing people for non-violent drug use is in no way justifiable. I pray none of your kids are busted for possession - the incarceration for drugs does way more damage than actual drugs ever could. Thanks to MikeCann for posting the episode for you to watch HERE.

UPDATE July 16, 2012
-  Here is another article regarding women who prefer Cannabis: Pot-smoking moms tired of being judged by wine drinkers

Here is the Comment I left:

Here is a post I wrote just over 3 years ago: " That was awkward...
Marijuana Mamas - The Secret Lives of Cannabis Using Moms "

If someone would have told the younger me that I would become a Cannabis Legalization Advocate I wouldn't have believed them. But when presented with the truth about Cannabis/Hemp and becoming educated beyond what we were fed in DARE there really was no question that fighting Prohibition and the destructive War on Drugs was the absolute right thing to do.

Our children deserve to grow up receiving proper education about ALL drugs and to live in environments free of organized crime. Cannabis needs to be re-legalized and regulated like alcohol and cigarettes. This ensures that underage youth are restricted from purchasing and that gang violence decreases because there is no longer a Cannabis black market for them to profit from and fight over.

I am thankful for Cannabis, it is a gift from Mother Nature and because the government does not own my personal body I will utilize this miracle plant that benefits my health and life exponentially. I am not a lazy Stoner, I am not a criminal, I am not addicted to harmful legal prescription narcotics or illegal synthetic street drugs - what I am is a loving, caring Wife and Mother who puts the well being of my children FIRST. I use Cannabis responsibly and do not deserve to be convicted criminally while booze using moms celebrate "Wine o'clock" and post their drunken "Hot Mess Ladies Nights" pictures on Facebook.

If our government and law enforcement is so adamant about Pot being dangerous ("What about the children!") you would think they would support a system of regulation and quality control over the cartel and gang controlled
free-for-all that has been allowed to flourish over the last 40+ year War on Drugs.

Women in Canada, please check out the NORML Women's Alliance of Canada, Moms for Marijuana International, and Moms United to End The War on Drugs - all on Facebook. There are many of us, more than you'd imagine and we are organizing in our communities and politically active at the local, municipal, provincial and federal levels and just like the strong women of WONPR in the 1920's and 30's we will be successful in ending Prohibition!

Update July 30th. - Another article, see, we're everywhere!  Read I'm a Marijuana Mom

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Cannabis and Cancer

All this week, "AC 360" is taking a close look at cannabis legalization in a series of reports. "America's High: The case for and against pot" delves into the debate - "Should we legalize pot? Can we afford not to?" Last night in the first of 5 segments, Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Melissa Etheridge spoke to Anderson Cooper about how she turned to medical marijuana to survive the horrible side effects of chemotherapy. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004 and is now cancer-free.

The following is an edited version of the interview.

Melissa Etheridge: I'm actually grateful for my cancer diagnosis.

Anderson Cooper: Grateful because it changed your life?

Etheridge: It changed my life; woke me up totally.

Cooper: What is the pain [of chemotherapy] like?

Etheridge: It was just a general pain of your body dying, of all your cells dying. Your appetite is gone. And you are nauseous. And your hair is falling out. Your skin -- it's like death. And the only thing I could do is lay there. I can't -- it hurt to -- light hurt, sound hurt. I couldn't read anything. I just laid there.

(Etheridge didn't want to use Vicodin or other prescription pills, she said.)

All of these things have side effects. So, the steroids and the pain relief that they give you on that first day when you go into chemotherapy causes constipation. So they will -- here is a pill for the constipation which will give you diarrhea. And you get huge side effects from all of this.

Cooper: The first time you did [marijuana], it made a big difference?

Etheridge: Instantly -- and instantly within a minute relieves the nausea, relieves the pain. And all of a sudden I was normal. You don't take medicinal marijuana to get high.

Cooper: So you weren't getting high?

Etheridge: No you don't get a high. No it's not a high. It was normal. And I could -- all of a sudden I could get out of bed. I could go see my kid. And it was amazing. (Etheridge often didn't smoke; the marijuana was mixed into butter and spread on food, or run through a vaporizer.)

Cooper: Did you ever worry about becoming addicted? They were saying this is a gateway drug?

Etheridge: No. Not at all. If you were on that side, you would understand what I mean. It is almost laughable to think that you could be addicted. This is not at all.

Cooper: You mention you still have a prescription. Do you still use marijuana?

Etheridge: Yes, I do. The effects on my gastrointestinal system leave me with a real intolerance for acid of any kind, and so acid reflux is a constant problem. I don't want to take the little pills that they give you that have all the side effects to help with that.

And I do use it -- I'm one of the users that would like in a stressful situation or maybe when I've eaten that cheese pizza with my kids that I will do that and it settles -- totally completely settles all that.

Cooper: Most people eat the cheese pizza after the marijuana.

Etheridge: That is true.

Cooper: You've got it backwards.

Etheridge: No. It's not like that. I know.

Cooper: There's more than, I think, 200,000 people in California who are registered to receive medicinal marijuana. Do you really believe that all those people though have legitimate reasons to be getting marijuana?

Etheridge: Yes. Who are we to say what a legitimate reason is? If it helps somebody at the end of the day instead of drinking a couple of glasses of wine, to have a few tokes, who are we to say? Why must we in this country be so judgmental about this? These people are not hurting anybody. They are not hurting themselves.

Taking a step further, scientific research has uncovered more hope in the fight against breast cancer. This study was published in the journal Molecular Cancer Therapeutics and primarily funded by the California Breast Cancer Research Program.

Marijuana Compound Shows Promise In Fighting Breast Cancer

ScienceDaily (Nov. 26, 2007) "A compound found in cannabis may prove to be effective at helping stop the spread of breast cancer cells throughout the body. The study, by scientists at the California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute, is raising hope that CBD, a compound found in Cannabis sativa, could be the first non-toxic agent to show promise in treating metastatic forms of breast cancer.

“Right now we have a limited range of options in treating aggressive forms of cancer,” says Sean D. McAllister, Ph.D., a cancer researcher at CPMCRI and the lead author of the study. “Those treatments, such as chemotherapy, can be effective but they can also be extremely toxic and difficult for patients. This compound offers the hope of a non-toxic therapy that could achieve the same results without any of the painful side effects.”

Pic Courtesy of Ed Rosenthal, THC Expo 2009

For more information on cannabis, breast cancer and medical research studies regarding this miracle plant fighting many more forms of cancer, please visit

To this day, the DEA and FDA dismiss Medical Benefit From Marijuana, regardless of DEA Administrative Law Judge Francis Young's monumental decision that cannabis (marijuana) should rightfully be placed in Schedule II or lower of the Controlled Substances Act to make it available by prescription. Nonetheless, the factual findings of his decision remain permanently on the record, and serve as a testimonial to his honest pursuit of the medical issues surrounding cannabis.

Highlights include:

- In strict medical terms marijuana is far safer than many foods we commonly consume. For example, eating 10 raw potatoes can result in toxic response. By comparison, it is physically impossible to eat enough cannabis to induce death.

- Marijuana, in its natural form, is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man. By any measure of rational analysis cannabis can be safely used with a supervised routine of medical care.

- A smoker would theoretically have to consume nearly 1,500 pounds of cannabis within about 15 minutes to induce a lethal response. In practical terms, cannabis cannot induce a lethal response as a result of drug-related toxicity.

- The evidence in this record clearly shows that cannabis has been accepted as capable of relieving the distress from great numbers of very ill people, and doing so with safety under medical supervision. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious for the DEA to continue to stand between those sufferers and the benefits of this substance in light of the evidence in this record.

The administrative law judge recommends that the Administrator conclude that the cannabis plant consid-ered as a whole has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, that there is no lack of accepted safety for use of it under medical supervision and that it may law-fully be transferred from Schedule I to Schedule II. The judge recommends that the Administrator transfer cannabis from Schedule I to Schedule II.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Trouble in Tampa

You'll notice on my blog that I have a Cannabis Twitter Feed, which highlights "Tweets" that mention the plant. After double checking that my last post looked fine, I noticed this tweet by @JailedTampa:

Vanessa . 28F: Possession Of Cannabis Less Than 20 Grams, Possession Of Drug Paraphernalia, Child Neglect.

My curiosity peaked, I clicked on the link. There, for the whole world to see is the mugshot and arrest report of one Vanessa M. She was busted in her own home.

I understand that child neglect is a very serious offense, but I wonder, did using Cannabis bring about the child neglect charge? That charge carries a bond of $7500.00, the possession charges are $500.00 each. . So now she sits in jail, unable to post the $8500.00 bond, her kids are without their mom, and her employer was made public, naming their "criminal" employee.

She obviously doesn't have the money to post bond, and if she gets out - will she get her kids back? Be fired? How will she make money to not only support her kids but to pay her legal bills if she loses her job? Will anyone want to even hire her again because of her arrest?

Now I'd like to bring attention to another case as @TampaJail posts the info of everyone they arrest:

Jamorris S. 22M: Aggravated Battery On Pregnant Female.

This man ASSAULTED a PREGNANT woman. He was arrested at 16:13, booked at 17:15 and was released, back into society, at 17:23 the next day. The whole thing from arrest, to booking, to release took 24 hours and ten minutes. Vanessa M. on the other hand, was not booked until 22:35, 6 hours and 10 minutes after her arrest at 16:45 and has been sitting in a cell ever since.

So, an unemployed guy beats a woman who is or was most likely his girlfriend or wife and carrying a baby, and gets the same bond amount as a pot smokers 2 possession charges?
Does this make sense to you? Do you feel safer now Tampa? Safer with the law putting Cannabis users behind bars and quickly letting women beaters back out on the streets?

And we're supposed to believe the "War on Drugs" is not a war on people.....

An addition to this post: I visited Tampa Bay Online to send them a letter to the editor, when what article do I see? New law gives prisons sensible out

"At a time when state lawmakers are combating massive budget deficits, state Sen. Victor Crist, R-Tampa, found a way to squeeze savings and inmates out of Florida's rapidly expanding prison system.

The measure, approved by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Charlie Crist, gives corrections officials the option of sending prisoners to other states. The law takes effect July 1."

Wow. Florida would rather send people to other states and pay for inmate incarceration instead of being smart and helping many non-violent addicts get treatment. Once again I say "It's the Prohibition!"

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

The exact people to listen to about ending the Drug War - cops who spent their career's fighting it!

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition
LEAP's Mission Statement:

Founded on March 16, 2002, LEAP is made up of current and former members of law enforcement who believe the existing drug policies have failed in their intended goals of addressing the problems of crime, drug abuse, addiction, juvenile drug use, stopping the flow of illegal drugs into this country and the internal sale and use of illegal drugs. By fighting a war on drugs the government has increased the problems of society and made them far worse. A system of regulation rather than prohibition is a less harmful, more ethical and a more effective public policy.

The mission of LEAP is to reduce the multitude of unintended harmful consequences resulting from fighting the war on drugs and to lessen the incidence of death, disease, crime, and addiction by ultimately ending drug prohibition.

LEAP's goals are:

1. To educate the public, the media, and policy makers, to the failure of current drug policy by presenting a true picture of the history, causes and effects of drug abuse and the crimes related to drug prohibition and
2. To restore the public's respect for law enforcement, which has been greatly diminished by its involvement in imposing drug prohibition.

LEAP's main strategy for accomplishing these goals is to create a constantly enlarging speakers bureau staffed with knowledgeable and articulate former drug-warriors who describe the impact of current drug policies on: police/community relations; the safety of law enforcement officers and suspects; police corruption and misconduct; and the financial and human costs associated with current drug policies.

Please visit LEAP's Website to find out more, including how to have a LEAP speaker come to your community or school.

You can also watch many more LEAP videos on their CopsSayLegalizeDrugs YouTube Channel.

Pass It to The Left!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Poll: Canadians See Drug Offenses as Illness, Not Crime

This is an older AngusReid Poll, but deserves a re-post.

Canadians See Drug Offenses as Illness, Not Crime
February 01, 2007

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) - Many adults in Canada believe prevention and treatment should be the main focus when dealing with drug users, according to a poll by Innovative Research Group released by CanWest News Service. 65 per cent of respondents think the consumption of illegal drugs is an illness, while 35 per cent consider it a crime.

Polling Data

Do you think the best approach to drug abuse is...

Treat the use of illegal drugs as an illness and
focus on prevention and treatment for addicts - 65%

Treat the use of illegal drugs as a crime and get
tough on enforcement of drug laws among addicts - 35%

Stephen Harper and the Conservatives stated during parliamentary debate of Bill C-15 that Canadians "told them" Mandatory Minimum Sentencing is what they want. This poll paints a different picture of majority belief, does it not?

Source: Innovative Research Group / CanWest News Service
Methodology: Online interviews with 2,938 Canadian adults, conducted from Jan. 8 to Jan. 15, 2007. Margin of error is 1.8 per cent.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Unleash the Lawyers

Who makes up the Canadian Bar Association and what is their mission?

"The CBA is dedicated to improvement in the law, the administration of justice, and support for the rule of law. Some 38,000 lawyers, law teachers, and law students from across Canada are members."

So, what does the Canadian Bar Association think of Bill C-15?

"The Canadian Bar Association (CBA) opposes the passage of Bill C-15, amendments to the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, because it would create a complicated system of escalating mandatory minimum sentences for drug-related offences that would not be an effective deterrent to crime.

“The CBA suggests that public safety concerns can be met with existing laws,” explains Sarah Inness of Winnipeg, member of the CBA’s National Criminal Justice Section. “The Bill could create unjust and disproportionate sentences and ultimately would not achieve its intended goal of greater public safety.”

“As lawyers in criminal courts across the country every day, we know that major drug offences are treated very seriously by the courts,” notes the CBA submission. “Judges have effective guidance from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and the Criminal Code to determine a fit sentence for the individual offender given the circumstances of the offence.”

“Crown prosecutors highlight relevant aggravating factors to judges. Judges can give those factors appropriate weight in determining if and when incarceration ought to be imposed, and the length and venue of such a sentence.”

The CBA notes that some offenders are good candidates for rehabilitation. “Minimum mandatory sentences will result in offenders who could have been rehabilitated remaining incarcerated long after their detention acts as either a deterrent, is required for public safety, or promotes rehabilitative goals.”

The Bill would reduce the number of guilty pleas, lead to more trials and more delays, and require additional resources to prosecute and incarcerate more offenders, according to the submission."

This group of professionals who are directly affected by the fallout of Bill C-15 state:

"The CBA has consistently opposed mandatory minimum sentences for the following reasons:

  • They do not advance the goal of deterrence.
  • They do not target the most egregious or dangerous offenders.
  • The have a disproportionate impact on those minority groups who already suffer from poverty and deprivation.
  • They subvert important aspects of Canada’s sentencing regime, including principles of proportionality and individualization and reliance on judges to impose a just sentence after hearing all the facts in the individual case."
How can the Conservatives and Liberals support a Law when the very people who are going to have to deal with the consequences of Bill C-15, say that Mandatory Minimum Sentencing (for what is no doubt going to affect large numbers on non-violent "offenders") does not work?

In webspeak, I offer you a *shakes head* and *facepalm*. Read the press release statement from the CBA here: CBA Favours Judges’ Discretion over Mandatory Minimum Sentences for Drug-Related Offences

UPDATE - The CBA has also released this info for Bill S-10

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Hemp Will Set Us Free

If you haven't already, read Jack Herer's "The Emperor Wears No Clothes". All chapters are also on Jack's Website with tonnes of other awesomeness - like this!

A pot poem by Dana Larsen

Please share and distribute freely


Would you like green buds and hash?
- No I would not, Mister Stash!

Would you like them in a bong?
Would you like them all day long?

- No I would not in a bong!
- No I would not all day long!
- I do not like green buds and hash.
- I do not want them Mister Stash!

Would you like them wrapped in paper?
Will you try them now or later?

- I do not want them wrapped in paper.
- I don't want them now or later.
- I don't want them in a bong,
- I do not want them all day long.
- I do not like green buds and hash,
- I do not want them Mister Stash!

Would you like them in a joint?
- No I would not, what's the point?

Perhaps you would prefer a puff?
Just have one, that is enough.

- I won't partake, not of a puff,
- Nor a hoot, nor hit, nor huff!

Would you try a tiny toke?
- No I don't want any smoke!

What if they were vaporized?
- I've told you no a thousand times!

Would you, could you, in a cake?
Or in cookies I can bake?

- I do not want them in a cake,
- Or in cookies you could bake.
- I do not want them vaporized,
- Or other means you have devised.
- I do not wish to try a toke,
- Or otherwise inhale smoke.
- I won't participate in puffs,
- You have asked me quite enough!
- I get no joy from juicy joints,
- I really do not see the point.
- I do not want to use the bong,
- I think that buds and hash are wrong.

In a tincture would you take it?
I could show you how to make it.

- I do not want them in a tincture
- Or in any other mixture!
- I do not want green buds and hash,
- I do not want them Mister Stash!
- Why do you care if I try them?
- Will you profit if I buy them?

I offer buds and hash for free,
There is no benefit to me.
Someone said that that you were sick,
green buds and hash might do the trick.
If you find you're getting thinner,
With no appetite for dinner,
Or you suffer from sclerosis,
Epilepsy or neuroses,
For almost all the ills that ail ya,
buds and hash will never fail ya.
Have glaucoma? PMS?
Green buds and hash have much success.
For protection against strokes,
Its best to have some potent tokes.
If your muscles are not dandy,
Try some green bud infused candy.
For migraines, spasms, even cancer,
Green buds and hash provide the answer.
If you are not feeling right,
Then have green buds and hash tonight.

- It's true I am not feeling great,
- My health's been rather poor of late.
- My doctor says that I have ills,
- He told me I should take these pills.
- I cannot even sleep at night,
- I never do feel quite alright.
- I will try green buds and hash,
- I will try them Mister Stash!


- Hey now I am feeling good!
- They worked just like you said they would.
- I have never felt this fine!
- Green buds and hash are quite divine!
- I will bake a green bud brownie,
- Whenever I am feeling frowny.
- I will try them vaporized,
- That technique seems very wise.
- I will take them in a tincture,
- And in every other mixture.
- Perhaps I would prefer to puff,
- And stop when I have had enough.
- I will roll some massive joints,
- And smoke them down to little points.
- I will toke upon the bong,
- I will do it all day long.
- I really like green buds and hash,
- I do enjoy them Mister Stash!
- Thanks for being so insistent
- And for being so persistent.
- My mind and body are improved,
- My spirit also has been moved.
- Though I was told they are a sin,
- Green buds and hash are medicine.
- I'm sorry that I was so hateful,
- Now I know I should be grateful!
- Thank you, thank you, Mister Stash,
- Thank you for green buds and hash!

Charlie Lynch - 366 Days Too Many!

Please take the time to watch the posted video "Raiding California" about teenage cancer survivor Owen Beck and Charlie Lynch.

This is a tragic miscarriage of "justice"! Help support Charles Lynch - visit his website, Friends of CCL - Legalize not Legal Lies

California Man Jailed for Medical Marijuana - ABC News

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Prohibition Spin

So, I'm on Twitter and I read a Tweet.

19 yr old Teen found shot at Main station-TTC - Globe & Mail #YYZNEWS

So, I click on the link to read the story on the Globe.

It began:

"A 19-year-old boy was in hospital Tuesday night after he was found shot in the leg at the Main Street TTC station in the city's east end.....

..... The victim, who police say was under the influence of marijuana and wasn't able to fully co-operate with investigators, is thought to have come into the station on the bus before boarding the streetcar...."

First, lets get one thing straight. *Cannabis can remain in a persons system for approximately around 30 days. Just because he had Cannabis in his system doesn't mean he was high at the time of the shooting. Besides, I'd be eager to find out what Drug Testing Kit the police are using, because we all know how reliable they are, right? (Video at bottom)

Secondly, the police state he "was under the influence of marijuana and wasn't able to fully co-operate with investigators". Of Course he wasn't able to co-operate - he was at the hospital in serious condition as he was just SHOT in the LEG!!!

I actually looked to see if the article was authored by Harry Anslinger. I am very disappointed in the Globe for using these kind of fear tactics regarding Cannabis and wrote a Letter to the Editor telling them so.

I also suspect we're going to see a new onslaught of this fear-based reporting from all media before Bill C-15 goes to the Senate. Just another way the police and media spin it people. Always take a minute to read between the lines.


*Cannabis - I have always always used this term to describe the Cannabis Sativa plant. Here is why:

"Marijuana" or "Marihuana" was the name Federal Beaureau of Narcotics Director Harry Anslinger introduced into the media to describe Cannabis Sativa or Hemp, as a scare tactic directed at white America. "As part of his propaganda campaign he deliberately eschewed the English word hemp, the botanical term cannabis (from which we get canvas) and the users' word: muggles. The word he chose was an obscure Mexican slang term (derived from Maria Juana "Mary Jane", originally a brand of cheap cigarettes) in order to exploit the xenophobia of the public.

Some samples from the San Francisco Examiner:

"Marihuana makes fiends of boys in thirty days -- Hashish goads users to bloodlust."

"By the tons it is coming into this country -- the deadly, dreadful poison that racks and tears not only the body, but the very heart and soul of every human being who once becomes a slave to it in any of its cruel and devastating forms.... Marihuana is a short cut to the insane asylum. Smoke marihuana cigarettes for a month and what was once your brain will be nothing but a storehouse of horrid specters. Hasheesh makes a murderer who kills for the love of killing out of the mildest mannered man who ever laughed at the idea that any habit could ever get him...."

And other nationwide columns...

"Users of marijuana become STIMULATED as they inhale the drug and are LIKELY TO DO ANYTHING. Most crimes of violence in this section, especially in country districts are laid to users of that drug."

"Was it marijuana, the new Mexican drug, that nerved the murderous arm of Clara Phillips when she hammered out her victim's life in Los Angeles?... THREE-FOURTHS OF THE CRIMES of violence in this country today are committed by DOPE SLAVES -- that is a matter of cold record."

Want to read more? Check out, which actually investigates - and debunks - Anslinger's "Gore File" stories.

42.0 Cannabis History and Facts

Awesome! Pass It to The Left.

Marijuana (Weed) History and Facts

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Bill C-15 Passes in the House of Commons


I write to you today with bad news. Bill C-15, mandatory minimum sentences for drug offences including marijuana passed the House of Commons 195/54. The bill was pushed through by the Conservative Party with the support of the Liberals. The Conservatives blatantly ignored all evidence and expert testimony and instead relied on talking points and ideology; Karl Rove and George W Bush would be proud, Canadians would be disgusted. The Conservatives were pressed by every party to provide a single piece of evidence in support of C-15, the Conservatives could not provide a singly study. Read more... C-15 has passed the House of Commons |

Monday, June 8, 2009

If Barack Had Been Busted (Updated)

I've often wondered about about this, I'm sure many of us have. GoVaporize* puts the question out there:
"So to cut to the chase, here’s my question President Obama"
"If you had been arrested for cannabis possession as a young man, or God forbid cocaine possession, Where would you be today?"

People are able to comment, so I left mine while also replying to another readers comment on the post:

@ MEDITERANIAN213 While I feel for you that you had a bad experience with Cannabis, would it be wrong of me to wonder if there were also not other factors contributing to your problems? Are you blaming Cannabis solely for all of your ills? Addiction usually occurs because of many factors in one’s life.

People can be addicted to thousands of different substances. Should government be able to tell you to put down that cheeseburger? Moderation is the key. Everything and anything has the potential to be abused.

It’s unfortunate when people get addicted to drugs. What will help them break their addictions? Treatment and rehabilitation. Not jail. Jail will just bring them more harm as they will be surrounded be violent people. This will depress a person further and does not address their health needs.

Upon release they can’t get a student loan to further their education, have a hard time getting a job and housing because of their criminal record and and they are more susceptible to falling right back into the habits and behaviors that put them in jail in the first place. It’s a formula to re-offend.

Education, Prevention, Harm Reduction, Youth Programs, Mentoring, these are things that need to be pillars of society if we are ever going to survive. Instead, billions are spent on enforcement - primarily after damage has already been done. Does that make sense?

Laws are enacted to punish people for causing harm to others. I argue that me eating a Cannabis Cookie for pain has no consequence to anyone but myself. It should not be the right of the government and police to restrict what individuals choose to put into their personal bodies.

Now, if someone causes physical harm or property damage while under the influence of a substance, then yes, they should be criminally charged. Someone can drink alcohol, and that’s fine. But if they drink and drive, it is not.

The fact is that millions of people use Cannabis responsibly and carry on successful, healthy, happy, productive lives. The prohibition of the plant and fear of incarceration, losing our kids and or jobs leads us to keep our use a secret. If coffee was illegal you’d immediately have millions of people proclaiming that “they never touch the stuff”. Meanwhile, every morning they are throwing a wet towel at the bottom of their doors and firing up their percolators. By the way, Caffeine is more addictive than Cannabis.

Getting back to the question of the post though, I think it is tragic that the President of the United States, Barack Obama, can freely admit to using Cannabis and Cocaine, and at the same time condone laws that enable the DEA and police to throw non-violent citizens in jail for doing the exact same thing. He is just one of the lucky ones that didn’t get caught.

Humans have been using Cannabis/Hemp for thousands of years. Enacting prohibition isn’t going to make the plant magically disappear. You can’t outlaw Mother Nature. Government should be regulating what could be a booming industry and take away the money source for cartels and gangs….. how hard is that to comprehend?

How can the President profess “America, Home of the Free” when hundreds of thousands of citizens are incarcerated for simple possession? If President Obama actually believed in true freedom he would strike down prohibition and end the Drug War. Society will never prosper as a whole until the US has a President brave enough to end the War on People that has been such a colossal failure.

I'd sure like to know what his answer would be to the above question, but I doubt he has the fortitude to answer.

Update: February 26, 2012 ~ The "Discrimination" photo featuring President Obama came across my Facebook News Feed and I asked Mr. Rice if I could share his experience. I felt it is very important to share the story of how a years old conviction for Cannabis destroyed his accomplishment of getting a janitorial job he had just landed over hundreds of other applicants.

"If you get caught with Marijuana it will effect your employment prospects for the rest of your life and you will be part of a permanent underclass.
If you don't get caught you can move on with your life and maybe even become President one day." ~ Chris Rice

True story: In January 2009 I lost a good paying construction job because the housing market crashed. I was competing against hundreds for each possible job opening when looking for employment. I managed to pass tests and interviews beating hundreds for one low paying maintenance job at a public housing project. Four hours after they called to tell me to start next week they called me to tell me they couldn't hire me because of a misdemeanor marijuana conviction 8 years earlier. I was never asked the question on the application or in the interview. They stated that any drug conviction ever and I could not work for them. I can't plunge toilets for people living in a public housing project because I got caught with a few grams of pot 8 years earlier! What am I supposed to do to live and support my son?

As long as I face discrimination for this conviction I will have to fight this injustice! I have sworn to this statement: "I will never vote for anyone that wants to put me in jail or wants me to be discriminated against, even for a short time." I hope you will make this pact as well.
This is not about smoking pot. I don't smoke pot anymore. This is about a life of discrimination for doing what 100 million Americans have done. Please watch the video I made that hits this point.

Bill Clinton, George Bush, and Barack Obama talk about their Marijuana use

Video of Presidents Obama, Bush, and Clinton talking about their own Marijuana use and see how their lives contrast with those who are arrested and given a criminal conviction.
Share and tag this video please! Make sure you include this description with the video link if you re-post:

"If you get caught with Marijuana it will effect your employment prospects for the rest of your life and you will be part of a permanent underclass. If you don't get caught you can move on with your life and maybe even become President one day. We need to end the life time of discrimination now!"

Mr. Rice informs me "[...] in California the law is such that an employer can't ask, you do not have to answer, and they are not able to look up marijuana convictions that are more than 2 years old. They are one of the only states that have this privacy law. It is a misdemeanor for them to even ask if it is more than two years old. They also can't ask about arrests that didn't result in a conviction on anything. We need this in every state as a harm reduction measure at the very least if they wish to continue the drug war."

Notice in the California Labor Codes:

432.8. The limitations on employers and the penalties provided for
in Section 432.7 shall apply to a conviction for violation of
subdivision (b) or (c) of Section 11357 of the Health and Safety Code
or a statutory predecessor thereof, or subdivision (c) of Section
11360 of the Health and Safety Code, or Section 11364, 11365, or 11550 of the Health and Safety Code as they related to marijuana prior to January 1, 1976, or a statutory predecessor thereof, two years from the date of such a conviction.

Two links that concern a court case over the marijuana section in the California Labor Code are: California Employment Applications Must Exclude Certain Marijuana Convictions -- Starbucks v. Superior Court (Lords) and
Questions Regarding Marijuana Convictions on a Job Application Must Be Clear and Unambiguous

This is an important part of the campaign to me to keep people from being discriminated for the rest of their lives over a conviction for an herb. [...] I first saw a disclaimer in Illinois while filling out an application for Manpower Temp Service and it said if I was a California resident I didn't have to answer if it was a marijuana conviction. It didn't apply to me in Illinois. That's what got me going on this thinking that we needed this privacy law everywhere. ~ Chris Rice

Picture Courtesy Chris Rice, please share with the above video link, Thanks! ~ MJ

Thank you, Mr. Rice, for letting me share your story. This is the real world, everyone, where real people like Chris Rice have had their lives so unnecessarily and needlessly derailed by the immoral legislation and subsequent fallout of Cannabis Prohibition. President Obama is lucky, he can take a walk down memory lane and reminisce about his youthful experimentation with plants. Alternately, millions of Americans who were (and continue to be) unfortunate enough to be charged and convicted of illicit drug possession are not so lucky, and carry a criminal record around with them like a Scarlett Letter for the rest of their lives.

While I wasn't "Born in the USA", my maternal Great-Grandfather was from Buffalo N.Y. by way of Ireland so there's a l'il bit of red, white and blue in me. I may not get to vote in an American election, but I can wholly understand why Americans feel especially betrayed by President Obama after the 2009 Election and may redirect their support this Autumn because of his flip-flopping regarding Cannabis. Many Americans believed that because President Obama publicly admitted to using Cannabis as well as Cocaine and openly stated that he recognized the Drug War to be a complete and utter failure that they were finally going to have a POTUS who would end the insane War on Drugs.

Instead what they've got is not only no end to the Drug War in sight, but a Federal crackdown on Medical Marijuana in States that have legalized its use and yet another increase of Federal (read: Taxpayer) funds to continue the insane War On People Who Use Some Drugs.

How deceitfully disappointing.

From the Marijuana Policy Project: President Obama: An Unexpected Enemy on Marijuana

Adam vs. The Man on RT - Mary Jane Outs Obama

More Links:

John Stossel's TAKE: Feds Announce Obama Flip-Flop

Obama Is Asked To Defend His Administration’s Opposition To Medical Cannabis — He Can’t
Why is the Obama Administration Suddenly Fixated on Stomping out Medical Pot?

*Note: The original post from "GoVaporize" is no longer online so we unfortunately cannot read the Comments that accompanied it. Thankfully I found the article reposted here.
~MJ, 2/26/12

Another UPDATE!!! May 24/2012
Penn's Sunday School - He says what millions of us are thinking!  Preach on! 
There's (in my view) appropriate cursing so take note this may be NSFW.

Penn Jillette and Michael Goudeau talk about
President Barack Obama's
appearance on Jimmy Fallon and his previous drug use.

Jimmy Fallon interview with President Obama

And it just keeps on coming! Update May 25, 2012

My, my, Barry really was quite the Cannabis Connoisseur.  From Buzzfeed Politics:

A User's Guide To Smoking Pot With Barack Obama

"Barry was quite the accomplished marijuana enthusiast back in high school and college. Excerpts from David Maraniss' Barack Obama: The Story dealing with the elaborate drug culture surrounding the president when he attended Punahou School in Honolulu and Occidental College in Los Angeles. He inhaled. A lot.

"When a joint was making the rounds, he often elbowed his way in, out of turn, shouted "Intercepted!," and took an extra hit. No one seemed to mind."

Seriously, go read the whole thing.  Americans should be even more disgusted - here's a man who obviously really loved pot but has no problem continuing this insane war that is imprisoning people for an activity he certainly enjoyed.

Looking for TRUE change?  Law Enforcement Against Prohibition Judge James P. Gray has announced his candidacy for Vice President, running with Libertarian Gary Johnson, former Governor of New Mexico.  These two aren't pulling any punches!
Gary Johnson Picks Judge Jim Gray for Libertarian Party Ticket

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Those Who Forget History Are Doomed to Repeat It

History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived,
but if faced with courage, need not be lived again.
~ Maya Angelou

On what may be the eve before the passing of Bill C-15, I implore all party members to realize just what is lying in store for our nation if we duplicate the mistakes of our neighbours to the South.

Sen. James Webb, (D-Va.) is trying to change things, before they can possibly get any worse and has launched an ambitious new effort to reform U.S. prisons nationwide.


"Webb has no problem locking up the serious baddies. In fact, he wants to reform the justice system in part so that we can incapacitate the worst of the worst. But Webb wants us to recognize that warehousing the nation's mentally ill and drug addicts in crowded correctional facilities tends to create a mass of meaner, more violent, less employable people at the exits. And unlike Guantanamo, there are always going to be exits.

The Justice Department estimates that 16 percent of the adult inmates in American prisons—more than 350,000 of those incarcerated—suffer from mental illness; the percentage among juveniles is even higher. And 2007 Justice statistics showed that nearly 60 percent of the state prisoners serving time for a drug offense had no history of violence and four out of five drug arrests were for drug possession, not sales. Webb also reminds us that while drug use varies little by ethnic group in the United States, African-Americans—estimated at 14 percent of regular drug users—make up 56 percent of those in state prison for drug crimes. We know all of this. The question is how long we want to avoid dealing with it."

Should we not be learning from the failed policies of the Americans? Why is the Canadian government attempting to follow down this road of failure and misery?

One thing is for sure, those Members of Parliament who support the draconian bill will be publicized, and summarily voted out of office by Canadians when our country falls further down the rabbit hole.

The future consequences of Bill C-15...... welcome to The United States of Canada!

Where is the Humanity?


Every single law enforcement member that participated in this unwarranted search and seizure should hang their heads in shame! Do y'all feel safer now that you busted a man in a wheelchair who can't speak or barely move with contorted hands? The Ottawa Police Department takes cruel and unusual punishment to a whole new level!

I have no words to convey my outrage with the treatment of Mr. Belair. I ask our government: "Is it worth it? Is this war on a plant worth treating Canadians with such cruel and unusual punishment? Is this a glimpse of what is going to happen even more if Bill S-10 passes?"

When will the madness end?!

Netherlands to Close Prisons for Lack of Criminals

Imagine that, when the Dutch government took a rational common sense approach to drugs, the crime rate went down, drug use declined, and now they are closing prisons.

Netherlands to close prisons for lack of criminals

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Saturday, June 6, 2009

How Cannabis Works

"It all started with the Sea Squirt.... "

Update: March 13, 2010. Read the article: Are You Cannabis Deficient? My reply: It makes absolute perfect sense that one of the reasons there is so much disease and ill health in our world may be because we (our bodies) have been denied Cannabis/Hemp, (beginning in the 1910's, 20's and 30's) a plant that has been used by us literally since we have existed here on Earth. When you take away a necessity and generational mainstay for our health and well being, we suffer physically and emotionally as a species. We are wired to accept Cannabis!

UPDATE March 2011 ~ Read the awesomely informative article: Worth Repeating: Body's Own Cannabinoids Are The Bliss Within 

Yes they should, Philosoraptor, yes they should.....

Update: 4/20 2013 - Check it out; PBS has a great site for "The Botany of Desire"

"Cannabis—more commonly known as marijuana—seems to have long ago adopted a strategy of tying its fortunes to humans, appealing in particular to our innate desire to alter consciousness, a desire that spans nearly every culture and historical period. In exchange, humans have gone to extraordinary lengths, often at their own peril, to help the plant grow and reproduce."

Tories, Liberals, Ignoring the Facts

Why are the Conservatives and Liberals ignoring the facts? In my opinion most Canadians are unaware of Bill C-15 and what it means to their everyday lives. Crime affects every single one of us as we share this beautiful country, and this Bill is going to bring more harm to more Canadians in the guise of being "Tough on Crime".



Chairman: Pierre Claude Nolin
Deputy Chairman: Colin Kenny

While this is the Summary, I believe everyone should read it. You don't have to be a politician or a lawyer to understand:

Reduced response of an organism and increased capacity to support the effects of a substance after a more or less lengthy period of use. Tolerance levels are extremely variable between substances, and tolerance to cannabis is believed to be lower than for most other drugs, including tobacco and alcohol.


Characteristic of a substance which induces intoxication, i.e., “poisoning”. Many substances, including some common foods, have some level of toxicity. Cannabis presents almost no toxicity and cannot lead to an overdose.


he Senate Special Committee on Illegal Drugs addressed the question of drugs just as everyone else does, with the same preconceptions, attitudes, fears and anxieties we all share. Of course, we had at our disposal the 1996 study our colleagues conducted on government legislation dealing with illegal drugs, which had enabled them to hear a number of witnesses over several months. We also knew at the outset that research expertise would be available to us, but it is still difficult to overcome attitudes and opinions that we have long taken for granted. Whether one is in favour of enhanced enforcement or, on the contrary, greater liberalization, opinions often resist the facts and in a field such as this the production of facts, even through scientific research, is not necessarily a neutral undertaking. We, like you, have our prejudices and preconceptions. Together we must make the effort to go beyond such predispositions. That is one of the objectives of this report.

The public policy regime we propose expresses the fundamental premise underlying our report: in a free and democratic society, which recognizes fundamentally but not exclusively the rule of law as the source of normative rules and in which government must promote autonomy as far as possible and therefore make only sparing use of the instruments of constraint, public policy on psychoactive substances must be structured around guiding principles respecting the life, health, security and rights and freedoms of individuals, who, naturally and legitimately, seek their own well-being and development and can recognize the presence, difference and equality of others.

We are aware, as much now as we were at the start of our work, that there is no pre-established consensus in Canadian society on public policy choices in the area of drugs. In fact, our research has shown us that there are few societies where there is a broadly shared consensus among the general public, let alone between the public and experts. We are well aware, perhaps more so than at the outset, that the question of illegal drugs, viewed from the standpoint of public policy, has a broad international context and that we cannot think or act in isolation. We know our proposals are provocative, that they will meet with resistance. However, we are also convinced that Canadian society has the maturity and openness to welcome an informed debate.

Further points throughout the Summary include:

Ø Cannabis itself is not a cause of other drug use. In this sense, we reject the gateway theory.

The relationship between cannabis use and delinquency and crime, based on research evidence, we concluded that:

Ø Cannabis itself is not a cause of delinquency and crime; and

Ø Cannabis is not a cause of violence.

Chapter 12 - The National Legislative Context

Drugs have been prohibited for fewer than a hundred years; cannabis for slightly more than 75 years. It is tempting to think that the decisions made over the years to use criminal law to fight the production and use of certain drugs are in keeping with social progress and the advancement of scientific knowledge about drugs. But is this really the case? The history of legislation governing illegal drugs in Canada, like the analysis in Chapter 19 of the structure of international conventions, suggests that it is highly doubtful. To what extent is such reasoning really rational? Is the rationale of the system of controls acceptable in the eyes of civil society, users as well as abstainers? What criteria motivated legislator decisions? Indeed, were there criteria? What motivated parliamentarians from Canada and elsewhere to prohibit certain substances, to control access to certain others, and to permit still others to be sold over the counter?

Knowing where we have been helps in understanding where we are going. That is the goal of this chapter, retracing the evolution of Canadian drug laws from 1908 to the present day. We have identified three legislative periods. The first, and longest, spans 1908 to 1960, the period of hysteria. We were told that drugs were made criminal because they are dangerous. Analysis of debates in Parliament and in media accounts clearly shows how far this is from truth. When cannabis was introduced in the legislation on narcotics in 1923, there was no debate, no justification, in fact many members did not even know what cannabis was.

The second period, much shorter, runs from 1961 to 1975, the search for lost reason. Following the explosion in drug use in the early 1960s and demands for reform from various sectors of society, governments appointed a commission of inquiry in Canada, the Le Dain Commission. Last comes the contemporary period at the beginning of the 1980s. Reform is not on the policy agenda any more and anti-drug policies have forged ahead.

In summary, we observed that:

Ø Early drug legislation was largely based on a moral panic, racist sentiment and a notorious absence of debate;

Ø Drug legislation often contained particularly severe provisions, such as reverse onus and cruel and unusual sentences; and

Ø The work of the Le Dain Commission laid the foundation for a more rational approach to illegal drug policy by attempting to rely on research data. The Le Dain Commission's work had no legislative outcome until 1996 in certain provisions of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, particularly with regard to cannabis.

~Pic Courtesy of Jeff Christen-Mitchell

Knowing this it's quite astonishing the Conservatives and Liberals are pushing Mandatory Minimum Sentencing. All so they can trumpet "We're tough on crime!"

When people hear the word "crime", they are most probably thinking of murder, rape, armed robbery.... not someone sparking a joint in the privacy of their own homes.

My argument to the Government of Canada is, after reading the full 2002 Senate Report, that using Cannabis should not be a crime in the first place.

Shame on any politician who votes in favour of Bill C-15. My only hope is that if it does pass, the Canadian people will wake up and revolt by voting every single one of you out of Parliament.

(note: Bolding is mine)