Article by Doug Schmidt, Windsor Star
In Ontario, you’ll soon be able to buy booze at the corner store and drink it in a public park, and you’ll be able to order a drink at 9 a.m. and crack open a six-pack at a parking lot tailgate party.
Booze kills, says Leo Lucier. But nobody, the long-time Windsor pot activist insists, dies from consuming marijuana.
Despite being made legal in Canada last October, Lucier said enforcement of new marijuana laws since then by the authorities appears to be stricter than anything he’s seen in years.
After his Compassion House on Tecumseh Road West was recently busted for the second time since legalization, Lucier was locked out of his pot-related business by his landlord. The criminal cases against Lucier — among the first to be charged under Canada’s new Cannabis Act — as well as against 10 co-accused arrested at the Compassion House and downtown Windsor’s Envy, are currently before the court.
With a list of prior pot convictions, including having to serve jail sentences, Lucier is worried about another potential stint behind bars, but that’s not preventing him from hosting a big pot party this week in downtown Windsor.
Skirting the nation’s drug laws has always been a part of 4/20. That’s the name of the annual gathering in cities on April 20 when pot enthusiasts openly and defiantly consumed cannabis and called for changes to the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act that made such activity subject to fines and jail.
This week’s “Epic 420 Festival” will be a three-day affair at Charles Clark Square starting Thursday and running from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. each day until Saturday. There will be live music, DJs, speakers, food — and lots and lots of pot.
Perhaps given his legal challenges, Lucier downplays the latter.
Officially, it’s a “peaceful demonstration,” he said, and the focus is on medical cannabis: “Nobody can tell us where to take our medicine.”