Ontario should avoid rigid system for selling pot

Editorial by Toronto Star

NEWS

Once marijuana is legalized, Ontario should not lock itself into a single rigid distribution system that treats adult consumers like naughty children and allows a substantial black market to survive.

Has the Ontario government learned nothing from its decades-long struggle to find the right balance between safety and paternalism when it comes to selling alcohol? Judging by the path it seems to be going down on how to handle recreational marijuana, the answer, sadly, is no.

Premier Kathleen Wynne and her finance minister, Charles Sousa, have made it abundantly clear that when the Trudeau government gets around to acting on its promise to legalize marijuana (quite likely by this time next year), the province’s favoured option is that it be sold through the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO).

True, they’re going through the motions of studying various possibilities. But at every opportunity, Wynne and Sousa point to the LCBO as a secure, established, well-run mechanism for selling intoxicating substances. Alcohol today – why not pot tomorrow?

Read full editorial here.

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