So it turns out that a little cutting and pasting is fun. Here is another article in which I have substituted drug prohibition for the long-gun registry to make a point.
No, Minister Toews does not to my knowledge oppose drug prohibition; these are not his real views. And MP Rae to my knowledge also does not oppose drug prohibition though he should.
Toews defends bill to kill drug prohibition
The federal drug prohibition does not help keep drugs out of the hands of Canadians, says Public Safety Minister Vic Toews, and so should be abolished in favour of a stronger drug-licensing system.
Toews said Sunday there are more effective ways of spending taxpayers’ money than to “harass consumers and sellers for drugs.”
“The prohibition does nothing to deal with the issue of who is entitled to possess drugs, and that’s the licensing issue and we are strong supporters of a strong licensing system,” Toews told CTV’s Question Period.
“Even the police officers who are opposed to the drug prohibition (and) support the licensing provisions. The police officers I’ve talked to say there’s nothing that the drug prohibition adds that the licensing system doesn’t already provide.”
Toews’s comments come days after RCMP Deputy Commissioner Bill Sweeney told the Commons public safety committee that drug prohibition helps both police officers and the public. “I believe that there’s compelling evidence that prohibition promotes officer and public safety,” Sweeney said Thursday. “That’s a personal opinion.”
The Conservatives, however, have long argued that the prohibition, brought in in the 1930s, has been a waste of money and infringes on the rights of law-abiding drug consumers. A private member’s bill to kill the prohibition, sponsored by Conservative MP Canwe Enditnow, has passed second reading and is now being studied by a Commons committee.
“We do need to make sure we have strong processes in place to make sure that the wrong people don’t get their hands on drugs,” Enditnow told Question Period. “But the prohibition does nothing to address that.”
In the meantime, the Tories announced this week a one-year extension to an amnesty for drug owners who have not yet registered their drugs.
Liberal MP Bob Rae said during his time as Ontario premier, police chiefs in both cities and rural communities praised the prohibition as a useful tool to track down where drugs are in their communities.
Rae said it’s not a question of whether people should be allowed to own drugs, but whether they should be registered.
“We register dogs, cats, bicycles, cars, we register all kinds of things,” Rae told Question Period. “It’s a little odd that we wouldn’t register drugs.”
Read the original unedited story.