Article by Amanda Siebert, The Georgia Straight
Last week, the Straight reported that three Canadian senators took a trip to Washington, D.C. to meet with anti-legalization groups and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions—the same man who, in 2016, uttered the words, “Good people don’t smoke marijuana.”
It’s bad enough that three unelected officials decided to waste taxpayer dollars seeking out the advice of a prohibitionist, but it’s not nearly as scary as what could happen as a result of their visit.
Since returning to Canada, Conservative senators Denise Batters, Claude Carignan, and Pierre-Hughes Boisvenu have been distributing a document among Senate committees that speaks to the alleged “threats” posed by the legalization of cannabis.
The document, authored by the antilegalization nonprofit organization Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), is an amalgamation of more than 40 pages of data concerning the effects of legalization in Washington, Colorado, Oregon, Alaska, and the District of Columbia.
Cofounded by former member of the U.S. House of Representatives Patrick J. Kennedy (a son of former U.S. senator Ted Kennedy), and author Kevin Sabet of the antipot book, Reefer Sanity: Seven Great Myths about Marijuana, SAM’s sole intention is to convince the American population that cannabis poses the same, if not greater risks to public health and safety than “big tobacco”.
Its board consists largely of physicians focused on addiction and treatment, as well as clinical psychologists and pediatric specialists. But SAM has also recruited people like David Frum, former speechwriter for George W. Bush and senior editor at The Atlantic, as “honorary” advisors to the board. (Frum has written a number of op-eds addressing the “perils” of legal pot.)