04.20.2017 09:34 AM


Here’s the dope on dope, from an old Straight Edge punk, in a handy bulleted, bolded list.

  • It’s a drug.  When prescribed, it should be only available from pharmacists.
  • It’s an intoxicant.  Unlike booze, it isn’t hardly linked to violence, which is good.  And, unlike booze, it’s still hard to figure out its intoxicating effects on someone behind the wheel.  Not good.
  • It’s a weed.  I don’t drink or take drugs or have ever smoked.  The idea of setting fire to a weed and inhaling the resulting smoke doesn’t seem like a super good idea, whether the weed is tobacco or marijuana.
  • It’s a trade barrier.  Or it will be.  Donald Trump is the most anti-trade occupant of the Oval Office, ever.  He’s already bashing Canada.  He will use dope as pretext to slow down/stop cross-border trade.  Just watch.
  • It’s boring.  It is is, it is.  In a world buffeted by war and terrorism and misery, like ours is, it’s fair to posit that cannabis has occupied way, way too much bandwidth.  It’s a good thing for sick people, so make sure they can get it at their drug store, and stop yammering about it all the time.

What do you think, O Smart Readers? Got a 420 take on toke?  Comment away.




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    cynical says:

    On trade: I’ve already been asked “Do you have any prescriptions?” entering Washington State from BC. You know they weren’t asking about my Crestor!

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    John says:

    I smoked a fair bit as a teenager and young adult… mostly due to peer pressure at the time. Haven’t touched it in close to 30 years and don’t miss it a bit.

    My wife has MS and has been prescribed all kinds of scary drugs to help – but nothing helped until she managed to get a prescription for medical marijuana. It’s in oil form and the THC has been mostly removed. She doesn’t get high. It’s the CBD that helps with her pain. It’s been amazing and I hope more people are able to get the help they need easier than it was for her.

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    Christian says:

    I agree. Its boring.

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    Luke says:

    I think it is more important and less boring than all that. Because it is a relatively low-harm drug (as far as we know) whose sale benefits criminals, and its possession or cultivation by consumers lands otherwise innocent people in legal trouble. These two issues bother me quite a lot. Full disclosure, I do use cannabis semi-regularly and so I don’t particularly like the possibility of having a criminal record for something so innocuous, although I don’t believe this overly colours my views on the matter.

    One thing I would like to know is a lot more about its health effects, including both its medicinal uses and its adverse effects. The literature is sparse and, as a psychiatrist told me, any of it funded by the American government is “corrupt”, because they revoke funding from researchers reporting low harms. So I hope with legalization comes an increase in medical research on this plant and its various active ingredients (the many cannabinoids and terpenes).

    Is it as important as global affairs at this time? No. But I do think it is important domestically, as we currently criminalize all recreational users, and I believe this is wrong.

    As for trade with Trump, someone once wrote about not giving in to and sucking up to his ilk. If that good advice, it should also apply to the matter of cannabis legalization.

    As for driving, unless you are a person so dependent on cannabis for regular function that sobriety impairs you, just don’t drive while inebriated. It affects focus and perception of time.

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    Cali Joe says:

    When did you become Straight Edge? I remember when you used to mention giving up beer for Lent.

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    Kevin T. says:

    There will definitely be opened-ended questions like “have you ever…?” at borders (scary thought for layovers in US) and most probably unreasonable and immediate consequences to long ago indiscretions/recreational activities.
    Another red flag would be flying to Colorado.

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    JamesF says:

    It’s a good thing (Legalization I mean).

    On a harm scale it’s relatively benign (likely on the level of or better than tobacco and alcohol) and people will smoke/eat/vape it regardless of it’s legality… therefor I think it’s:

    A: Better to have law abiding moral citizens produce and distribute it,
    B: Better to have it’s sale contribute to the tax base,
    C: Better to not have the criminal element profiting off of it,
    D: Better to have law enforcement shift more focus on other crimes

    Ultimately I think it’s something the government ought to have no right to tell me (or any other adult citizen) that I can’t put it in my own body. Full Disclosure: Have “partaken” in the past but haven’t in 25 years… no bad experience just ceased to find it enjoyable (Ditto for Tequila).

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      JamesF says:

      Gah, typo… haven’t in 15 years. Don’t want to make myself feel that old.

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        dave constable says:

        No…you forgot how old you are…medical research says that happens when people partake when they are under 25.

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    Matt says:

    The whole Liberal plan is a scam.

    Look, I’ve never tried it, and don’t plan on ever trying it. I have had access to cannabis since my high school days and in fact I could make one phone call and have 20 different strains to choose from in less than an hour at my door. I just have zero interest in it.

    This Liberal plan for their version of “legalization” will not accomplish any of their stated goals. It won’t stop kids from getting it. It won’t stop the black market from producing, selling and profiting from it.

    It will be just like tobacco. It is estimated the illicit tobacco market makes about $3.5 billion per year in Ontario alone, and between 1/3 and 1/2 of all tobacco bought in Ontario is purchased on the black market.

    Cannabis will be no different.

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    Mike says:

    hey, you gonna finish that hot dog?

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    Miles Lunn says:

    I support legalization and generally think the balance has been found well, although I would like to see the provinces set the age higher. Since the brain isn’t fully developed until 25, 21 as opposed to 18 would seem better. Also all sales should be at separate stores off limits to minors, no sales in grocery or corner stores like you have with tobacco in all provinces or booze in the case of Quebec and a few others. I am glad it remains a criminal offence not just a misdemeanor to provide it to a minor. As for cross border trade, make it clear by advertising that is a criminal offence to transport marijuana across an international border (Uruguay is the only other country to legalize it and there are no direct flights from Canada to Uruguay) and if caught at US pre-clearance customs you won’t just be denied border you will be arrested for smuggling. If caught trying to bring it into Canada or if arrested at the US land border and turned over, you will be charged. Eventually other countries will follow and then the law can be revised to allow export and import of marijuana between countries where legal provided one is not passing through one where legal and done for personal purposes only (if for business, then a licence would be needed). Otherwise make the rules very tough and overtime like we did with alcohol we can ease them. Lets remember when alcohol was legalized after prohibition (every province except Quebec had prohibition, we just never had national prohibition like the US), you used to have to get a permit to drink and everytime you purchased booze they punched the card and if they thought you were drinking too much they interdicted barring you (note it was very arbitrary and in fact in some cases racist as First Nations were almost always refused in many provinces, which thankfully we wouldn’t do today). Nowadays, asides from some Beer Stores, they are all self-serve and you don’t have the government tracking your purchases and in the case of Alberta they even privatized booze sales outright. As for whether it should be government or privately run or a hybrid model, I would leave that up to the provinces to decide. My guess is in some like Ontario, it will probably be government, BC looks like they will have a mixed system like they do for booze, while Alberta will probably be private.

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    Mark says:

    It’s a weed. I don’t drink or take drugs or have ever smoked. The idea of setting fire to a weed and inhaling the resulting smoke doesn’t seem like a super good idea, whether the weed is tobacco or marijuana.

    More accurately, it’s a plant. Just like tobacco is a plant. There’s no biological definition for a weed. Weeds are simply plants that grow and spread where we don’t want them to. One man’s dandelion weed is another’s dandelion salad.

    But regardless, you’re right that the inhalation of any burning substance is not a super idea for your lungs. However cannabis can also be consumed in drops, oils, other edibles, etc. So that alone is an insufficient argument against pot. Your other arguments stand though.

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    Robert Frindt says:

    We won’t be truly free until Baby Doc legalizes glue sniffing.

    My suggestion to Conservatives is to organize a free dope treasure hunt in competitive ridings on election day. It gets around the legal prohibition against paying people not to vote – and the effect is much the same.

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    Kevin says:

    Yes, it’s boring. This whole debate should have been over years ago. Marijuana is less harmful than either tobacco or alcohol, but because it is an intoxicant it should be treated as restrictively.

    But kids are still going to get pot, just the same as they now get booze, for two basic reasons: it’s forbidden therefore it’s attractive, and you can get shitfaced. We should all stop kidding ourselves that we can “keep it out of the hands of young people”.

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    MississaugaPeter says:

    Been around it, never partaken.

    With that said, was on a few occassions in early 1980’s Calgary, in a car with a high school buddy who smoked dope driving. Was scary then, is something that has to be seriously criminalized and enforced now. To hell with those who get criminal records, lock them up and send them to jail, just like those who drink and drive.

    What you do in your own home and to yourself is none of my business. However, I curse anyone and feel happy paying taxes to imprison anyone who puts my life, my children’s life, and other people’s lives in danger because of their narcissistic decision to be high and drive.

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    Ronald O'Dowd says:


    Never tried it. Strongly support medical. As for recreational, it has the potential to be either incredibly beneficial or an unmitigated disaster for users. My gut says it’s a roll of the dice.

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