Monday, December 08, 2003


I ran smack into the full moon rising over the railroad trestle today as I was walking down Main Street. It just glowed in a sky still that shade of midnight blue that lingers just before the darkness falls. It was stunning. Fitting tribute I thought to my improved mood since my dear friend and compatriot Karen's safe return home. Having her back makes my little world feel whole again. (Missed you dears.)

Meanwhile there's a party going on upstairs. I still don't recognize my new neighbors, I think it's three girls this time -- it's always hard to tell who actually lives there with twenty-somethings. This appears to be the housewarming complete with out of town guests. So far it looks like my good neighbor luck is holding out. They seem like nice kids and although there's a lot of people, it's far from raucous.

photo instapundit

The internet is a funny place. You get to know people you never actually meet by what they say. It's a cold medium without the warmth of voice inflection but it's orderly in that no one can really interupt you in mid-sentence and that which is commited to bandwidth lasts longer than words hanging in the air.

So feeling a little guilty about making cracks about the exalted Instapundit, Glenn Reynolds on short research, I decided to give him another few days of authentic attention. It wasn't really encouraging. What was he thinking when he said this:

IT'S NOT 1968: Here's a bit of graffiti that I noticed while walking around campus earlier today. Despite all the Vietnam-era nostalgia, things just aren't the same now as they were then. (Maybe the graffitist had been reading Mark Steyn: "Islamic terrorism is a beast that has to be killed, not patted and fed.")

I guess the Campus Issues Committee probably wasn't behind this, but apparently The People will find alternative ways of getting their message across, despite The Man's best efforts.

Oh, wait, it's not 1968, is it? Or if it is, it's a topsy-turvy version. . . .

Now if you actually read through all the links, the piece is actually pretty well balanced, but most readers don't read past the first few paragraphs and I think the links and the absurd implied analogy between terrorists and the activism of the 60s constituted a less than subtle smear against liberals and the entire anti-Bush movement, who are widely portrayed in the media as aging hippies.

It's a long stretch between the ethic behind Make Love, Not War and Exterminate Terrorists. As I told Glenn, "This is a straight out, neo-con, my country love it or leave it, long live King George, kind of slogan."

The summer of love was one of the most peaceful and significant moments in our political history. We really did change the world for a moment and I'm offended that he would seek to associate that memory with the current Bush inspired violence and bigotry. It's disrespectful of what we accomplished. (Just another reason I'll never be insta-launched.)


Turning to sunnier climes, there's good news out of Jamaica. The National Commission on Ganja submitted a report to the prime minister two years ago, after nation-wide consultation, and the report is now being considered by a committee of Parliament.

Testimony before the committee has been widely favorable and included Ethan Nadelmann of Drug Policy Alliance and prominent Jamaicans from such diverse groups as The Catholic church, the Council of Churches and the Medical Association of Jamaica along with the Rastafarians.

The commission recommended that the use of small amounts of ganja for private, personal use by adults be decriminalised; that it be decriminalised for use as a religious sacrament, but that smoking by juveniles, and public smoking be prohibited.

Sounds reasonable to me.


Hot news from the cold north, this late breaking press release from OSARC announces the beginning of yet another period of legislative confusion in Ontario.

We're happy to inform consumers that, because of Health Canada's failure to implement constitutional Medical Marijuana Access Regulations, wide-open marijuana legalization is back in Ontario!

The police will likely still have their 'business as usual' public relations line, but since Health Canada has defied the order of the Ontario Court of Appeal by not allowing a grower to supply multiple patients, as ordered, the MMAR is unconstitutional. Because it's unconstitutional, that means that according to the Parker decision by the same court in 2000, the marijuana possession law is dead once again.

We would remind people that while they might still be arrested and prosecuted by police and prosecutors who refuse to acknowledge the status of the law, they may seek substantial financial compensation later.

This is a notice to police that while they do have the power to arrest harmless marijuana smokers, they will be doing so at their own peril.

Cannabis consumers will not allow themselves to be treated as second class citizens, and many will be armed with legal information and representation in case the harassment continues.

The winter of legalization looms. It sounds like a good time to check out some of those Canadian cafes to me.


While we're talking about Canadians, Licia Corbella has a powerful oped piece on the curative properties of marijuana. Since our governments refuse to fund legitimate scientific research and continue to ignore the results of credible studies already undertaken, we are forced to rely on anctedotal evidence to make our case for a medicinal herb that has been employed as a remedy for a multitude of ailments for 5000 years.

Licia relates the story of Reshma Maharaj Hawn, a 23 year old who has suffered from epilepsy since the age of seven. Before using cannabis, Hawn describes a wretched existence.

"I couldn't walk across the street alone. I had to hold someone's hand, just in case I got a seizure. I couldn't swim, because if I got a seizure I would have drowned," she says.

After undergoing cannabis therapy, her story changed dramatically. Read the whole story and tell me why anyone should be in jail for providing this herb.

Last word to Reshma:

"Now I can walk down the street without holding someone's hand. I can use a public washroom and lock the cubicle -- I could never do that before -- I'm taking swimming lessons. It's wonderful. It's a miracle."

And one day, maybe our laws, police and courts will reflect this miracle and stop prosecuting those who help others.


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