Last Thursday the Liberal Government unrolled a key plank of their election platform: the legalization of marijuana. But with so many critical questions unanswered, we need to ask: Just how ‘high’ are the Liberals that they think this is a good idea?
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he wants to keep pot out of the hands of kids, but his plan to legalize marijuana is a promise to pot smokers, not parents. The Prime Minister has proven that he can’t manage the economy, electoral reform, or keep our border secure. With his dismal record, why should we trust him to protect our kids from pot?
The new law would allow adults age 18 and over to possess up to 30 grams of dried cannabis or its equivalent in public and to buy cannabis from a provincially regulated retailer.
When introducing this bill to Canadians the Public Safety Minister stated: “We have a responsibility to act as expeditiously as we can … we can’t drag our feet; we aspire to get this done as quickly as possible.” My question is why? Canadians are facing a growing debt and an increased tax burden under Prime Minister Trudeau’s leadership. We have a border that has been described as “Swiss cheese” thanks to Liberal inaction to halt the flow of illegal migrants entering Canada. We face threats from ISIS and other terror groups, exemplified by a recent investigation which revealed that Montreal airport employees were likely radicalized. With so many serious issues on the horizon, the Liberals are once again trying to ‘wow’ Canadians with style over substance.
There’s a long list of critical questions that Prime Minister Trudeau needs to answer. What are the costs of legalization? Will he work with municipalities and provinces or will he just download all the responsibilities and costs for implementation and enforcement to them? How will he ensure safety for motorists? How will roadside testing be addressed? What direction is being given to police forces across the country to deal with marijuana possession and driving? Does he really believe that his plan for legalization is going to remove the criminal element from pot sales? How will the Liberals produce, sell, and tax this drug, while keeping the costs down (something this government has proven incapable of doing with anything to date) enough to compete with street dealers?
One of the main reasons the Liberals claim legalization is necessary is because Canada’s youth are smoking more pot than ever, but this is simply not true. Programs that encourage kids to stop using marijuana have been working. The Canadian Centre for Substance Abuse says that for youth ages 15-24, marijuana use has dropped from 33% to 24%.
Most troubling is this: The Liberals have set the legal possession age at 18, but the medical community has consistently stated that marijuana use in those under 25 can cause serious damage to the development of the frontal lobe/cortex of the brain – the part of the brain that controls important cognitive skills in humans such as emotional expression, problem solving, memory, language, judgment, and sexual behavior.
Perhaps the Prime Minister’s own well-documented use of the drug – including during his time as an MP – accounts for his bizarre priorities. Maybe the Liberals think that if they get the country high Canadians won’t notice what a mess they have made.
Unlike the Liberals, the Conservative Party has adopted a measured, responsible approach; to keep minor marijuana possession illegal but make it a ticketable offence. This is a position that has been adopted by the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police.
While the Liberals rush forward with another ill-conceived campaign commitment, I will continue to raise these essential questions