Currie’s Corner 637, July 5, 2018

Currie's Corner, Nostalgia Cafe

Currie’s Corner 637,  July 5, 2018

Trudeau the younger, aka Selfie Boy, failed to get us access to legal pot by Canada Day. Now we’re looking at mid-October, and the provinces are scrambling. Governments are hoping that a partnership between private entrepreneurs, and the bureaucrats who have run the liquor monopoly in Canada since Prohibition ended, will be able to come up with enough legal weed that qualifies for the Good Housekeeping seal of approval to drive the drug dealers out of business. Good luck.

Legalization is a federal initiative, but enforcement and regulation will be in the hands of the provinces, and it’s fascinating to watch as the penalties are rolled out. Saskatchewan provides a classic example.

Those who break the rules in Rider Nation could face fines ranging from $200 to more than $2,000. 200 will be the penalty for people convicted of possessing or distributing more than 30 grams of dried marijuana in a public place, including smoking in a campground.

It will cost $1,000 in Saskatchewan if you’re caught smoking weed on a school ground, or at a day care. At the top of the penalty chart is a fine of $2,250 to anyone selling marijuana who fails to demand proof of age from the person on the other side of the counter. Presumably anything beyond a first offence might result in a pot retailer losing their license.

If our overworked Mounties and other police officers had nothing else to worry about, this might work wonderfully. But in the real world of 2018, chances are they’re more concerned about whether the person they stop might be hopped up on crystal meth, or perhaps fentanyl . Will they remember enough to administer Naloxone properly to save lives, including their own. For quite a while now, enforcement of cannabis laws in Canada have been well down the priority checklist of the men and women in uniform.

I can’t help wondering why anyone thinks that will change in October.

I’m Roger Currie