Backward, expensive legislation first test for NDP's effectiveness
Canadian PM Harper proposes draconian changes
About four decades ago Canada decided to invest in criminal rehabilitation, and the result has been declining crime rates since 1973, to the point where our streets are safer than they have been in more than a generation. The Canadian Government is trying to take a "tough on crime" stance, yet their 19th century attitudes towards crime and punishment are not worthy of an advanced civil society such as we are.
Despite being warned by many judges that Canada's cannabis laws are unconstitutional and unenforceable, the right wing Conservative Party currently in power proposes making recreational pot growing a major crime.
Conservatives think growing herb is worse than raping children
Incredible though it may seem in this age of respect for children and tolerance of other cultures, the Canadian Government is proposing making 14 years the penalty for cannabis agriculture, versus 10 years for violently violating another human being. The minimum mandatory prison sentences for herbal gardeners are also more severe than those facing rapists.
Finally, the grandmother with 7 plants in her backyard is treated the same as a farmer with 190 plants on a half-acre of land. If they were both being treated well and fairly I would not mind this asymmetric aspect, however if the goal is to "punish the dealers" then this legislation is pure insanity.
British Columbia cannot afford putting more gardeners in overcrowded BC prisons, and Health Canada has been faced with severe cuts to medical marijuana research that were dictated by the Harper government.
NDP: You are Canada's Official Opposition, so please do something to help Canada's 4 million herb smokers, thanks kindly.
Students: Organize your friends to attend rallies and protests against this costly, unjust and vindictive law. Join the NDP or the Green Party and bring up the issue at meetings.
Activists: THIS is the battle you have been waiting for, and remember that civil disobedience and non-violence are interlinked and are keys to building a progressive, secular, civil and honest society. Organize ultra-smart, illustrative demos, rallies and statements, and you will earn the respect of Canadians and accomplish something significant for Canada, and crucial even for the progress of the planet as a whole.