Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The War on Drugs continues... (sigh)

Good news everyone!

Seems the WAR on Drugs (TM) is getting back on track in Canada!

I haven't seen Tony Clement in so long that I had naturally assumed that he had died. Turns out though that he's actually still Minister of Health, and he's determined to teach us all the evils of drugs!

This ought to go well.

Mr. Clement "decried the fact that, in Canada, there are nearly as many people who smoke marijuana as ones who smoke tobacco, and blamed vague, ambiguous messaging from politicians and public-health officials". So apparently, Canadians smoke pot because our politicians and public-health officials forgot to tell us not to!

It's humourous to me that Clement thinks that rates of pot-smoking are high because the anti-drug message hasn't gotten out. It seems to have never occured to him that the anti-drug message has gotten out, and that when it comes to pot, people aren't dumb enough to fall for its disingenuous arguments. It's not that Clement's message isn't out there, it's just that no one's falling for it. It also never seems to have occured to the Minister that politicians haven't been making anti-marijuana arguments because the people don't want them to make anti-marijuana arguments. In this area of public policy, the public thinks X, and the Minister thinks Y. The Minister's entitled to try to change the public's mind of course, but I sure will miss having a government that follows the will of the people on this file.

I can't believe that 35 years after the LeDain Commission people like Clement are still trying to peddle this silliness. Well, I too am concerned that "there are nearly as many people who smoke marijuana as ones who smoke tobacco" but my concern lies with the fact that there are still so many people smoking the much more harmful tobacco.

If the Health Minister wants to focus on priorities that are totally different from those of the Canadian people, that's fine. I do wish at the very least he'd choose something that's a priority to SOMEONE.

After 18 months of being AWOL, I don't want to hear from the Minister of Health that he's going to crack down on illegal drug use, with advertising. It's depressing, because it makes me think that not only does he have no idea what's going on, but that he doesn't even really CARE that he has no idea what's going on.

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