Liberal MLA Kash Heed Says BC Attorney General’s Marijuana Comments “Destructive”, “Disturbing”

CANNABIS CULTURE – Former Police Chief and current BC Liberal MLA Kash Heed has called out his party’s own Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Shirley Bond, about enforcement of marijuana laws in the province, calling her comments “destructive” and “quite disturbing.”

Bond, in a statement made to Cannabis Culture about the Sensible BC campaign to decriminalize marijuana, claimed the federal government is ultimately responsible for making and changing the province’s pot laws.

“Police are constitutionally required to enforce the rule of law,” Bond told CC. “Until and unless Canadian law is changed, the production, sale and use of marijuana is currently illegal (controlled federal legislation), and our police have a responsibility to enforce criminal laws for the good of all British Columbians.”

Heed, the Liberal MLA for Vancouver – Fraserview, former chief constable of the West Vancouver Police Department, and former superintendent with the Vancouver Police Department, said he disagrees with Bond and that it is actually the province that is ultimately responsible for enforcing the laws.

“The Administration of justice here in the province of British Columbia is controlled by the provincial government,” Heed told Cannabis Culture at a marijuana legalization panel at Simon Fraser University on January 17. “We control the court system, we control the law enforcement and all of that stuff. I’ve taken a different position than the Minister previously, and I’ll take a different position here.”

“When we have people making those destructive comments and trying to influence people, I find that quite disturbing,” Heed said in reference to Bond’s statement. “We have to be realistic, practical; we have to understand discretion will continue to be applied by not only police, but prosecutors, judges, and even correction officials.

“Discretion is inherent in all of our criminal justice system. I, as a police officer, exercised my appropriate discretion continually, prosecutors did, and judges certainly did. If we did not exercise that discretion and went by the rule of law, I can tell you one thing: the whole system would collapse. When you look at the amount of criminal charges that get processed, only 10% of them actually go to trial.”

Watch the video from the Legalizing BC Bud? Politics, Economics and Public Health panel at SFU (comments about Bond’s statement start at 43:05):

The Sensible BC ballot initiative campaign would, if successful, effectively decriminalize possession by adults of an ounce or less of marijuana by provincially de-funding police enforcement. The initiative has been approved by Elections BC and supporters hope it will be on the ballot in 2014.

Heed recently called for marijuana legalization and was featured in a video about ending prohibition-related gang violence, calling our current drug laws a failure.

Four former BC attorneys-general spoke out last year in support of marijuana decriminalization and penned a letter published in the Globe and Mail on January 18 calling for an end to the “burden imposed on BC’s policing and justice system by the enforcement of marijuana prohibition.”

“Now it is time to put ideology and politics aside in favour of a level-headed, evidence-based discussion about the failure of marijuana prohibition and the policy alternatives available to us,” write the former AGs. “Provincial and municipal leaders across Canada must join, if not lead, the debate and demand change. Only then will we end the prohibition-fuelled cycle of crime, waste and violence.

Statistics show marijuana possession arrests on the rise in British Columbia, doubling over the last decade.

Comments

28 Comments

  1. fashion trends on

    If you are applying for a mid level position, just say that you hope to contribute to a winning team.

  2. Anonymous on

    Canada’s government is run by conservatives who have sold Canada out to multinational corporations and USA, via NAFTA and other bad agreements. Harper is worse than W Bush. Tar sands, the genocide of First Nations, the gutting of environmental protection, the Texass province called Alberta, all are signs that Canada is going downhill. Too much capitalist, consumerist, shallow, Honey Boo Boo influence from the big dog south of the border. You can’t trust any mainstream Canadian politician. They sent Marc to the USA to be imprisoned for selling seeds. Vote Green or start a revolution. Otherwise, Canada will be absorbed by the earth-destroying, rights-destroying neighbor to the south, and the vulture corporations that are ruining our land, air, oceans, water, climate.

  3. Anonymous on

    heres a easy way to put it. all canadians that are legal to vote, vote to legalize marijuana or to keep it illegal. which ever one you believe in. once everyone as voted we look at the votes and see which one has more votes and pass the law. is that right or wrong? has marijuana killed anyone yet? what about ciggs? they even advertise how many they kill each year on the ciggs packs. people keep buying them and there legal? wtf is up with that. people that have too much money and now search for power are just ruining other people lives. we the people should vote on whats right and wrong, come together and tell the government this is what is going to happen, not the other way around. i believe in canada, that one day we will all stnad on gaurd for thee and really mean it.

  4. BigBudAl on

    I disagree with the comments here. Police officers do change.I have met a few ex-cops that are tireless warriors against the war on Drugs.
    Yes he is a so-called liberal and I must say I don’t usually think much of them but you have to admit he knopws the truth about pot just like everyother cop,but at least he has the balls to put it out there. Good For Him

  5. Anonymous on

    All Provincial Politicians say the same thing “Its up to the Federal Government”. Well you don’t see that in the states, the states are making their own sensible laws; to heck with the Feds they are smarter going to make money and save money (prison costs). Win Win

  6. Bud Grinder on

    So long as BC’s government is polluted with Harper butt-lickers, this is what you can expect. Kash Heed was one of them himself until very recently.

    Don’t ever trust this former vicious drug warrior. Heed is an opportunist who has jumped on the marijuana bandwagon because he thinks he sees some advantageous political points he can make for himself because, as we all know, the handwriting is on the wall and its only a matter of time.

    He is not with us in spirit, only with mouth — to see himself carried along into higher office by riding on the coat-tails of the cannabis culture.