December 14, 2018

BY JOSH PEDERSON

The Trudeau government’s legislation on the legalization of marijuana is fast approaching, with the purchase and consumption of the earthy green substance scheduled to begin in July.
It is a move that has Canadians speculating as to whether this direction is one of calculated judgement regarding the future of the country and its economy, or if it is an impulsive leap into a vast uncharted realm by our inexperienced, young politician.

There are plenty of challenges involved with legalizing marijuana which will have some people questioning the Prime Minister’s campaign and ultimately test the population of Canada’s 36 million residents.

Regardless of your method of consumption, be it smoking, ingesting or vaping, tetrahydrocannabinol, the active ingredient in marijuana, will send you on a euphoric journey of lost time and unquenchable hunger.
While it may sound like a dream come true, Canada will need to have a dedicated tactical approach on monitoring the distribution of cannabis to ensure the safety of residents.

For a drug which contains several medicinal properties and benefits, there are still dangers which need to be addressed for a successful movement.

Impaired judgement is something to take into consideration when targeting the potential dangers that may arise come legalization. Reaction time is delayed when under the influence, something not too beneficial when operating a motor vehicle for example.

Police forces across the country already have their hands full trying to keep our roads safe. Technology and training regulations are still in a primitive state for calculating potency levels in marijuana users, a potentially fatal flaw that does not seem to get much attention.

It is true that smoking tobacco is worse for your health than smoking marijuana and it is true that impairment on alcohol far exceeds that of marijuana, but is increasing access to another popular drug a wise decision?
That is not to say marijuana legality does not have merit.

Legal pot will bolster our economy. New jobs will need to be created for the cultivation, harvesting, marketing and selling of the product, a shift that could see billions of dollars of increased revenue for the country, while taking control from the criminals.

Time will tell if Canada’s shift to be only the second country behind Uruguay in having nationwide marijuana legalization is the correct one. The United States has already shown economic benefits and positive public approval in states where legal marijuana exists. Legal weed is coming and it is up to the Liberal government to ensure it is a benefit, not a detriment.

The views herein represent the position of the newspaper, not necessarily the author.

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