cannabisnews.com: Make Up Your Mind on Marijuana, Feds Urged 





Make Up Your Mind on Marijuana, Feds Urged 
Posted by FoM on August 16, 2001 at 20:22:16 PT
By The Canadian Press
Source: Toronto Star
Police rarely charge anyone with marijuana possession because Canadians have an increasingly laissez-faire attitude to pot smoking, says a Vancouver police officer. Tom Stamatakis, president of the Vancouver police union, said, "People can still be charged with possession but it happens only a fraction of how often it used to. It's almost non-existent."
"You could walk in Vancouver and just smell the marijuana in any neighbourhood," said Stamatakis, interviewed Thursday at a meeting of the National Association of Professional Police. Some other participants at the convention agreed it's time for the government to make up its mind on marijuana: either decriminalize it, or give police the funding they need to enforce the law."We're not getting a clear message and that's frustrating," said one police officer.Stamatakis said Vancouver has about 7,000 marijuana-growing operations and there's little political will to shut them down.The idea of decriminalizing marijuana possession has entered the mainstream recently, with proponents like Tory Leader Joe Clark and the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police.The federal government has already endorsed the medical use of marijuana.Some convention delegates said Ottawa may be preparing the public for decriminalization, which would remove the penalties linked to pot possession."We remember what happened with video lottery terminals. They were in on a trial basis, but we've got them for good," said one Quebec officer. "I get the feeling that's what's happening here."Conservative Senator Pierre-Claude Nolin, an outspoken supporter of decriminalization, said many police officers feel privately the war on drugs has been a failure and a waste of money.But they won't express that view openly, he said. "How many investigators tell us the same thing in private, only to continue the war on drugs the following day and  above all  defend it in public?"Millions of dollars are wasted each year on laws which are almost ignored in some areas, said Nolin, chair of a Senate committee on illegal drugs.For example, people convicted of simple marijuana possession in Toronto are 10 times less likely to serve jail time than others in the rest of Ontario, Nolin said.The Senate committee, which began hearings last October, is scheduled to submit an initial set of recommendations next August.Nolin said that even if he favours looser marijuana laws, the committee won't necessarily recommend decriminalization. He said it may be impossible for Canada to act alone on decriminalization because of its shared border with the United States."Changing our laws without the Americans doing it? It's just about impossible. It can't be done," Nolin told reporters. "Maybe we'll convince them to come along with us." Related Links:CFDP: http://www.cfdp.ca/BC Marijuana Party: http://www.bcmarijuanaparty.ca/Marijuana Party of Canada: http://www.marijuanaparty.org/Source: Toronto Star (CN ON)Published: August 16, 2001Copyright: 2001 The Toronto Star Contact: lettertoed thestar.com Website: http://www.thestar.com/ Related Articles & Web Site:FTE's Canadian Linkshttp://freedomtoexhale.com/can.htmDrugs in Canada - Gone To Pothttp://cannabisnews.com/news/thread10571.shtmlCannabisNews Articles - Canadahttp://cannabisnews.com/thcgi/search.pl?K=canada 
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Comment #4 posted by Phyro_the_Dragon on August 17, 2001 at 01:43:38 PT:
A new hole!
 in the dike and Gush needs more fingers to plug holes! looks like The File And Rank Of Canada Police are fed up & need YOU Canadans to Finaley let them know!! ( Stop jailing people for pot)        Go Canada                 Phyro
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Comment #3 posted by Phyro_the_Dragon on August 17, 2001 at 01:42:27 PT:
A new hole!
 in the dike and Gush needs more fingers to plug holes! looks like The File And Rank Of Canada Police are fed up & need YOU Canadans to Finaley let them know!! ( Stop jailing people for pot)        Go Cannada                 Phyro
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Comment #2 posted by rabblerouser on August 16, 2001 at 20:58:58 PT
When pigs fly
Pigs are flying over Colombia right now. Frank Zappa put humor in music, I'll try some here.
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Comment #1 posted by DCP on August 16, 2001 at 20:33:07 PT
Lead On, Canada!!
"Maybe we'll convince them to come along with us."  Yea, when pigs fly!  Show us the way, Canada. Sure, you will get some arrows from DEAland, but leaders have always been know for the number of arrows in their ass. DCP
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