Letter Of The Week


In attempting to blame cannabis consumers for black market violence
(“Violence follows industry, cops warn,” March 9), RCMP Cpl. Peter
DeVries came tantalizingly close to understanding the problem.

DeVries remarked “because of its monetary value as a commodity,
marijuana is inextricably tied to serious acts of violence.”

Indeed, criminal prohibition makes the “street value” of cannabis
worth fighting for. Additionally, black marketeers have no recourse
to the law, and must settle their own disputes. Starbucks employees
are not found left for dead by Tim Hortons employees.

We do not know what percentage of cannabis cultivators and merchants
are violent criminals, because the market is unregulated, but a
survey of Canadian prisoners serving time for high-level cultivation
and trafficking found that about 70 per cent were otherwise law-abiding.

Just as alcohol consumers supported Al Capone, and cocaine consumers
supported Pablo Escobar, if you buy cannabis (rather than grow your
own) and you do not know its origins, then you might be supporting
violent criminals. If you still support cannabis prohibition, then
you most certainly are.

Matthew Elrod


Pubdate: Fri, 11 Mar 2011

Source: Province, The (CN BC)

Referenced: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v11/n160/a10.html

Source: Province, The (CN BC)