Toronto police raid what is described as illegal marijuana dispensaries in ‘Operation Claudia’. And what a surprise, they meet resistance from protesters.
On June 30, after 45 years the U.S. DEA may lower the classification of marijuana as an illegal drug from the most highly illegal substance, a Schedule 1 drug (which includes LSD and heroine), to a lesser Schedule 2 drug.
Marijuana has cost governments and taxpayers internationally arguably a trillion or more dollars in a multi-decade long attempt to control and keep possession criminal. Careers have ended and people have been sent to prison for 20 years for minor possession of cannabis.
In the U.S. now, while three states allow marijuana sales for personal consumption, only one medical facility in the entire nation is licenced to conduct marijuana medical research and minor possession can still result in major prison time.
Canada is very, and increasingly, different.
Let’s review what the DEA may decide and the impact of lowering the classification of marijuana, not only in the U.S., but also Canada and internationally. We’ll track back to the most basic question of all and that is ‘why do you smoke marijuana?’ Knowing the risk of inhaling any smoke into your lungs, and that marijuana possession remains a criminal offence in Canada, why do you smoke the stuff and do you not worry, or care about, possibly being criminally convicted of marijuana possession? A criminal conviction would seriously alter your life forever.
Allen St. Pierre, is the Exececutive Director of NORML in Washington, D.C. NORML is a national organization which has, for more than 20 years, lobbied for legalizing marijuana in the U.S. There’s a Canadian chapter of NORML as well. Their reps have been on the show, but with major change in marijuana designation possible in the U.S. nationally in a few weeks and any such re-classification having an impact on Canada, we go to Washington for comment.
Why do you ‘smoke’ marijuana? It’s more potent than 30 years ago, it’s a definite cancer risk just like smoking cigarettes is, there’s a criminal conviction possibly waiting for you which would alter your life forever. The most fundamental question of all, ‘why do you smoke marijuana’ and what does marijuana do you for you that a few beers won’t?