Friday, November 19, 2010

MP Shelly Glover is Not4Me!

"I ask, what parent in their right mind would have their child thrown in prison amongst
truly violent criminals for the "crime" of using drugs?"

This week the Conservative Government released an over the top commercial about your little Bieber-loving teeny bopper getting hooked on drugs. (All of 'em?) Before we know it, she's cutting herself, flashing ghastly lip sores and for some reason is sporting a really bad dye job.

The following is an expansion of my original response to the Maclean's post: Just say no after Shelly Glover went cherry picking in the House of Commons and touting "DARE 2.0":

Prohibition does not keep drugs out of our children's hands. Prohibition leaves drugs to be controlled by the black market, and we all know that drug dealers don't ask for ID. If our Government was truly serious about keeping drugs out of the hands of minors it would legalize and regulate the sale to adults. Any teen will tell you they can purchase pot much more easily than they can get alcohol and cigarettes, because the sale of those substances are controlled.

Shelly Glover needs to do some reading. "Summary from The 2002 Senate Special Committee on Illegal Drugs:

Many substances, including some common foods, have some level of toxicity. Cannabis presents almost no toxicity and cannot lead to an overdose.

~ Cannabis itself is not a cause of other drug use. In this sense, we reject the gateway theory.

The relationship between cannabis use and delinquency and crime, based on research evidence, we concluded that:

~ Cannabis itself is not a cause of delinquency and crime; and
~ Cannabis is not a cause of violence.
~ Early drug legislation was largely based on a moral panic, racist sentiment and a notorious absence of debate"

Moms, (and Dad's too!) we have to stand up and demand our politicians and police focus on REAL Crime that does hurt our kids, like child abusers and paedophiles. Parents should be demanding the MILLIONS of dollars our government spends every year on enforcing pot growers (Which also entails sending helicopters to search for plants. Say that back to yourself - "sending helicopters to search for plants...". While our country is drowning in the Conservative caused Ocean of Debt your tax dollars are being spent to send cops to fly expensive-to-run machines through the sky to find PLANTS to rip out of the ground after they are spotted. Mother Nature must be so proud!) instead be put towards catching child predators.

It's quite disturbing the Conservatives would rather shovel money towards escalating enforcement and incarceration of cannabis consumers, instead of FACTUAL education and programs that will help kids in our communities. How many universities could have been built (with billions of your tax dollars) while the hellbent Tories are busy planning, implementing and executing prison expansions? How many scholarships for Canadian kids could have been paid for? How many treatment spots would exist for those who desperately need help for addiction instead of the government spending your hard-earned money for enforcement, court, lawyer, incarceration and probation costs of cannabis users?

"As for the jails, who will fill them? she asked. “Is it a case of build it and they will come?”

She suspects what they’ll do to fill those jails is just lower the criminal bar so they will have enough people to fill the jails.
And then they can say,
we told you so.
" ~ Margaret Atwood, Atwood launches assault on gov't with razor-sharp wit

I am truly appalled that we have politicians that trample on our individual freedom and rights, they perpetrate this con under the guise of being "Tough on Crime!". Well, I want our politicians to be SMART about crime and focus their legislative efforts on incarcerating those who truly are a danger to our society. Canadian Moms & Dads, (Grandparents too!) we have to be vocal in this fight, we have to let our parental voices be heard - we deserve to have common sense drug policy in Canada and imprisoning our young people for using or selling a plant is wholly criminal in itself. I ask, what parent in their right mind would have their child thrown in prison amongst truly violent criminals for the "crime" of using drugs?

Our neighbours to the south who have literally 4 more decades of harsher drug laws and Mandatory Minimum Sentencing experience than us have demonstrated that the: "Drug War Continues to Fail Spectacularly - AP: IMPACT: After 40 years, $1 TRILLION, US War on Drugs has failed to meet any of its goals"

I implore my fellow Canadians to learn about Bill S-10 (formerly C-15), and please take note that Justice Minister Rob Nicholson has yet to provide evidence to support this horrendous law. Under Bill S-10 simply baking a batch of pot brownies will get you sentenced to a MINIMUM 18 MONTHS (!!!) in jail, and judges will have NO discretion, no choice but to hand out that insane sentence.

"Calling the Tories Out on Bill C-15 - "The Politics of Fear":

"Bill S-10 ~ New Name For Bad Law":

"Canadians: Get Up! Stand Up!": Talkin' "Smart On Crime" post from June 2009

Please contact your Senators and MPs and request they be SMART about crime and vote NO on Bill S-10! For more info visit S-10 info page and

You may be a mother, Shelly Glover, but you certainly don't speak for me. You see, I like to enlist common sense and listen to things like facts, and evidence regarding drug policy. You can bleat to the sheeple "What about the children!?" all you want, but any Mom who cares enough to put knee-jerk reaction aside in favour of careful research will agree with me - Cannabis Prohibition causes way more harm to our society than actual drug use does. Of course we don't want kids to use drugs, and responsible parents will educate themselves about all drugs, licit and illicit, so we can give our kids the honest to goodness truth and real facts about all drugs because really, it's not the governments job. While I appreciate education about drugs as a public service, our children deserve such important information presented truthfully. If you lie about cannabis, kids are going to think you also lie about much more dangerous drugs, and that in itself is grossly irresponsible!

For parents looking for real facts about drugs, two great sites are Canadian Students For Sensible Drug Policy, who has countered the Conservatives with their own Not4Me website: and . Media Conference April 13, 2010 Part 1:

Part 2:

On April 13, 2010, Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy (CSSDP) held a media conference discussing the launch of, a drug education website created in response to the government's inadequate 'Drugs not4me' campaign. Instead of fear and negative stigma, CSSDP created a drug information website based on honest information and including harm reduction tips. Part 1 features CSSDP staff member Caleb Chepesiuk discussing the shortfalls of the federal government's approach. Part 2 features CSSDP board of directors member Tamara Kalnins discussing

Neill Franklin, executive director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, and Gary Johnson, former Governor of New Mexico, talk about the futility, violence and devastation to children caused by the War on Drugs as well as the availability of tested, safe alternatives. ~ Watch Part 2: Retired cop and former Governor speak out against War on Drugs . Find more great LEAP videos here: CopsSayLegalizeDrugs YouTube channel.



Realistically only a small percent(1) of Canadians develop an addiction to hard drugs, and because I actually took the time to attend an informative presentation/meeting about InSite I recall a cruel truth - a harsh fact is that many hard drug users are sadly*victims of violence, people who had been physically assaulted, sexually assaulted, who had witnessed violence, or who had family members with alcohol or substance abuse problems.

"Poverty, homelessness, lack of education, family dysfunction and parental substance misuse, mental health problems, and a history of child abuse are all social determinants that place people at higher risk of misusing drugs or of injecting drugs.
Individuals who develop alcohol and other drug addiction are still stigmatized in Canadian society. Canadians who inject drugs are even more stigmatized, as they are, by and large, rejected by society because of the illegal nature of their behaviour, their sometimes disorganized lives, and their vulnerability to diseases. They are often labeled as difficult to manage, disruptive and manipulative. A significant portion of society views them as lesser persons - criminals and derelicts. These attitudes and misconceptions have resulted in a variety of harms, including public apathy, undiagnosed mental illness and inaccessible treatment (2) and rehabilitation programs.
It is estimated that up to 125,000 people in this country inject drugs. This includes an estimated 25,000 Canadians who inject steroids. "
~ Where did I find this? Why, right here.


"About 73% of federal dollars on drug policy in Canada go toward enforcement. Only 2.6% goes to prevention, only 2.6% goes to harm reduction and about 14% to treatment. That is a very uneven balance."
~ MP Libby Davies

Updated Nov. 21st to include the Margaret Atwood article.

UPDATE 2: November 24th.
MP Marlene Jennings, Official Opposition Critic for Justice and the Attorney General, has released this statement on criminal justice concerning the punitive, tunnel-vision "Tough on Crime!" Torie mantra. Here is an excerpt:

"In the 2010 budget the government slashed Grants for the Victims of Crime Initiative by 43% and the Contributions to the Victims of Crime Initiative by 34%. This money would have gone directly to community groups that help victims recover from trauma. Furthermore, the government’s Fall 2010 advertising report showed that $6 million was set aside to produce an advertising campaign directed at victims of crime, while funding for the Victims of Crime Initiative last year amounted to just under $4 million. The ad campaign is shockingly hypocritical, since the Conservatives have spent more money on the ads than they have on actual initiatives to help victims of crime."**

Update 3:‎"Not exactly an accurate reflection"
Critics slam the Tories’ new anti-drug campaign, Macleans magazine, December 3, 2010.

UPDATE 4: The Conservative Government has decided to roll all of their crime bills into one huge Omnibus Bill and have vowed to pass this within 100 days of Parliament resuming. Read Goar: Timely warning for Canada about prisons and please visit to find out more. You can also contact your Member of Parliament regarding the Omnibus Bill - let them know we do not want Canadians to suffer the dire consequences of Mandatory Minimum Sentencing!
Blog updated/edited September 17, 2011.

Update 5 October 27, 2011
: New post up about Omnibus Bill C-10, "Canadians: Don't Be Tricked by the "Safe Streets and Communities Act"
- It's Omnibusted
!" ~
and Parents PLEASE READ "The mandatory minimum mess" by Dan Gardner:
"And remember the phrase "real property that belongs to a third party"? That's what a rented apartment is. Imagine a university student living in a rented apartment with her boyfriend, suggests University of Toronto criminologist Tony Doob. She grows a single marijuana plant. She rolls a joint for her and her boyfriend. And just like that she's a "trafficker" subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of nine months in jail.

Are these outcomes simple, clear, and predictable? Hardly. They're shocking as hell. But mandatory minimums have a nasty tendency to do that."

"Incarcerating people for relatively minor marijuana offences is “cracking a nut with a sledgehammer.”

I'm asking all Moms (and Dad's and Grandparents too!) to participate in a Bill C-10 Protest: via @Leadnow:Canadians are standing together against a fill-the-prisons approach to justice that has failed everywhere it’s been tried.
Join a coalition of groups for two days of action to speak out against the cruel Crime Bill. Time is running out to make Canada safer, not meaner - we need you to help us all make a big impact.
Where: Our MP’s local constituency offices.
When: Focus on Thursday at 1pm, with actions throughout Thursday and Friday.
We’re going to tell our MPs: Don’t mess up like Texas. Stop the cruel Crime Bill.
Go to to find out the location closest to you. Thanks, MaryJane.

Update 3/2013: Sadly, the Omnibus Bill is now law in Canada.
*While Steve didn't say exactly the words in this meme,
he didn't have to; pushing the bill so vehemently proves to us
that he supports Canadians serving jail time
for baking pot brownies (cannabis edibles).


(1)- Canada's population as of November 2010 is
34, 252, 000+
(StatsCan Population Clock)

(2) Mentally ill offenders swamping prisons

**Bolding is mine.

*Several studies demonstrate that raped or sexually assaulted women and adolescents display substantial increases in drug, alcohol, and nicotine use and abuse. Prospective data from the National Women's Study (Kilpatrick, et al., 1997) demonstrate that rape and physical assault increase risk of alcohol and drug abuse in previously non-abusing women.

Investigators have suggested that violence plays a role in adolescent and adult substance abuse. In these conceptualizations, substance use represents a strategy to cope with the stress produced by interpersonal aggression . Hypothetically, distress produced by assault drives individuals to engage in behaviors that reduce negative emotions, such as situational avoidance or drug use . That is, use or abuse of substances following assault may be an effective, but maladaptive, strategy to diminish negative affect. Support for this learning-theory model is provided by studies that demonstrate an association between affect regulation and substance use . The coping theory of substance use presupposes that increased negative affect following exposure to stressors, as opposed to stressor exposure, per se, increases the likelihood and intensity of use. Clinically significant reactions to negative life events, such as those manifested in symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), might be expected to have strong relationship with substance use behaviors. Using data from the National Women's Study (NWS), Epstein, Saunders, Kilpatrick, and Resnick (1998) found support for this hypothesis by demonstrating that the relationship between childhood rape and adult alcohol abuse was mediated by PTSD. ~

Cherry picking, when used figuratively, refers to selective extraction of points in an argument in order to refute or affirm them while ignoring others which will not support the point(s) being made. Often, these cherry-picked factoids or references will be over-extrapolated and oversold to give the impression that they are representative, when they are not.

(Burnam et al., 1988; Kilpatrick et al., 2000; 2003; Miller, Downs, Gondali, & Keil, 1987; Miranda et al., 2002; Polusny & Follette, 1995; Rheingold et al., 2004; Simpson & Miller, 2002). (Kilpatrick et al., 1997).
( Bean, 1992 ; Brown, 1989 ; Dembo et al., 1987 ; Ireland & Widom, 1994 ;
Lindberg & Distad, 1985 ). ( Kilpatrick, Acierno,
Resnick, Saunders, & Best, 1997 ). (e.g., Brown, 1989 ; Hernandez, 1992 ; Levenson, Oyama, & Meek, 1987 ; Stasiewicz & Maisto, 1993 ; see also Stewart, 1996 ).