Commentary – The coming legalization of marijuana doesn’t make it right

Mac Olsen

I can still remember watching an episode of ‘Sanford and Son’ in 1976, where one of the characters unwittingly growns marijuana. Another character knows what it is – and the legal ramifications that could follow.

Later, two police officers eat it, thinking of it as salad, and they want more. The audience laughs and the episode ends with no legal action taken against the grower or the other characters.

That episode has been part of the ongoing social and political commentary about marijuana use. Supporters and detractors have spelled out their positions over legalization. I fall into the latter group, believing that it should never be legalized under any circumstances.

Regrettably, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his left-wing government will soon pass legislation allowing for the “recreational” use and taxation of marijuana. To Trudeau’s way of thinking, it’s socially acceptable to allow people to get high on it. And it can be produced under controlled supervision, without any health risks to the “consumer.”

But, morally, Trudeau is wrong. Marijuana is a narcotic and it should not be highlighted as socially acceptable. What Trudeau’s doing is telling young people that it’s alright to engage in substance abuse, and existing users that they can continue with their habit-forming abuse without having to consider the consquences and harm they are doing to themselves and others around them.

Marijuana is like cocaine, heroine, fentanyl and other naroctics. Let’s take driving as an example. We don’t condone people to get behind the wheel when they’re drunk, because of the danger they pose to public safety. It’s the same for marijuana use; I don’t want somebody getting behind the wheel after getting high on marijuana because of their reduced stated of alertness and being a risk to public safety.

And even though supporters of legalization use propaganda to say that there are few or no risks in using marijuana, I can find other information to circumvent and destroy their positions.

Sure, we can legalize and control it, just like alcohol production and consumption. Quality controls and inspectors can be put in place to ensure that the “legalized” and “safe” marijuana isn’t laced with something hazardous.

But what’s to say that someone in a position of supervision, authority, production or distribution won’t be tempted to lace that “safe” marijuana with something very dangerous, and even life threatening? Maybe they’ll even be tempted to look the other way as the criminal element laces it with something lethal. All for the benefit of personal financial gain.

And if you think the criminal element will simply vanish because government has legalized and/or taken over production of marijuana, think again. They won’t stand by and watch their revenue streams decline to the legalized/authorized dealers and distributors.

If anything, be more concerned about increased violence, especially against legalized outlets, distributors, users and innocent people. That will result in exactly the opposite of what Trudeau is intending with his pro-marijuana stance.

So, as Nancy Reagan would have said – just say no to the legalization of marijuana and the harmful consequences to come.

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