Canadian pot laws full of holes

Last week I wrote a story announcing a serious deficiency in Canadian pot laws that invalidates them. Since then, I have been contacted by a myriad of cannabis activists who say that my story only scratched the tip of the iceberg.
Reverend Ed Pearson of the sacramental-cannabis using Church of the Universe is behind at least two high-profile cases that are looking at yet more problems with the law. In Ontario, Reverend Pearson is representing cannabis activist Marko Ivancicevic.

Ivancicevic was arrested for alleged possession in January, 2004, shortly after what activists hailed as the “Summer and Fall of legalization”, a period during which CC publisher Marc Emery smoked up in front of police stations around the country. The period of legalization was upheld in October 7, 2003 by the Ontario Court of Appeal, and was said to cover from August 1, 2001 to the date of the October, 2004 case.

The problem, said the Ontario Court of Appeal, was that the med-pot regulations were unconstitutional. Because the med-pot regulations were unconstitutional, the pot possession laws were as well.

Reverend Ed Pearson’s argument refers to the Ontario Court of Appeal ruling. If the possession laws were unconstitutional, says Reverend Pearson, then they were unconstitutional since the day they were written in 1995 – which means they didn’t ever really exist. If they didn’t exist, then the med-pot regulations were unnecessary and without foundation, because nobody needs a medical exemption from a nonexistent prohibition.

Furthermore, since the possession laws don’t mention cannabis specifically, but refer to what is known as a “schedule” of illegal drugs, which includes cocaine and heroin, you can’t remove the possession offense for cannabis without removing it for all drugs. Instead, you have to remove all cannabis offenses at once, including cultivation and trafficking. Which means, Reverend Pearson concludes, that the entire range of cannabis offenses are invalid.

In addition to his work with Marko Ivancicevic, Reverend Pearson is helping Michelle Kubby prepare for a case in British Columbia. Michelle is the wife of cancer-survivor Steve Kubby, who fled the US after the DEA raided his home on false pretenses and arrested him for growing his own medicine. Steve Kubby was the first American to receive a med-pot license from the Canadian government.

Meanwhile, the Canadian legal system is in chaos. Some med-pot clubs and users are being charged and raided by cops while others are being freed by the courts. The Canadian government can’t make up its mind about whether to go forward with a fake decriminalization bill designed to make prohibition even tougher, even while nonexistent pot laws dive into oblivion.

During this time of governmental distress, I encourage all Canadians to fight their charges. There is no reason why anyone need go to jail for a law that according to activists does not exist, but which has been ruled unconstitutional by one of the nation’s highest courts!

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