Article by Chris Nelson, Calgary Herald
Arguing that smoking dope is safer than drinking booze is akin to stating that getting shot in the leg is preferable to taking one in the head.
Yet, that’s the argument often used by pro-pot crusaders, as we debate the minutiae about what age should Albertans be allowed to legally buy weed. Well, folks, that bus long ago left the station — kids can already get a hold of dope with little effort.
Don’t get me wrong; let’s legalize the stuff. In fact, we should decriminalize every other drug, because the entire campaign to treat addiction as a matter of legality rather than mental health is among the deadliest and costliest exercises society has tried.
That failure is reflected in addiction rates in Canada that are truly staggering — designate all Manitoba as a federal penitentiary and we’d still run out of room to jail sufferers.
It isn’t just pot smokers and fentanyl seekers. The willy-nilly production, prescribing and swallowing of legal opioids beneath the all-encompassing banner of pain relief is at levels in Canada above anywhere in the world.
It’s a cosy multibillion-dollar relationship between drug companies, doctors and a willing population wanting a pill for every ache and occasion.
If that isn’t enough, then the effects of the copious amounts of booze we swallow is even worse for individuals and society. Make no mistake: alcohol’s a poison. That’s why our bodies go into survival mode, halting other digestion to immediately tackle the toxin at the first sip.