Canada’s Cannabis Champ Loses Supreme Court Bid

CANNABIS CULTURE – Five years of court wrangling came to a sudden end when Supreme Court of Canada denied our leave to appeal, effectively throwing medical marijuana patients into the arms of Harperites and their jailers.

The loss is a devastating feeling only goaltenders who lose a Stanley Cup can possibly understand.

Last Thursday’s lost is possibly the most devastating feeling I’ve ever had. Sans a death. I didn’t have hope or faith, but truly believed in what we were doing. I believed we could move mountains. I believed if we worked hard and put our noses to a grinder we would get the outcome we envisioned.

R v. Mernagh started with a small, but strong roster of players who believed they could go all the way. Our first victory gave the world a sense of relief – Washington and Colorado had yet to legalize – the ruling became bigger than life.

Few people saw the constitutional argument that went over two weeks, but it was possibly the most admirable fight anyone has ever made for medical marijuana. Lawyer Paul Lewin brought the same passion, dedication and drive I did. We make a wonderful team.

As a test case, the court granted us an unfathomable amount of time to mount our argument. I respect the courts and my legal counsel for the amount of calendar time awarded to R v. Mernagh. Not awarding the feds costs for our Supreme Court of Canada appeal is their way of saying our appeal at least had some merit.

We lost. All campaigns come to an end. Obviously we wanted to bring home the ganja gold, but it just didn’t happen. “Sometimes you lose, regardless of how prepared you are to win,” according to Leadership Secrets of Attila the Hun.

Losing Game Seven is not fun. It’s devastating. Soul crushing. But you don’t disrespect the players or referee or game because the players are crushed physically and emotionally from playing it so hard. They require a pat on the back for taking you all along with them on their ride.

I watched from Jodie Emery’s balcony Vancouver Canuck fans riot and turn on their team. Not all of them, but a small few. Those people who turned on their team were shunned (or jailed) and those who stood by their team found their own sense of passion, in their city and their team.

As The Captain I feel like I let my team down. I promised patient witnesses we would go all the way to Supreme Court of Canada when we started and I’m sorry we didn’t. It was a very great ride. We have to move on. Regroup. Retreat until we have the strength, energy, and resources to fight prohibition again.

Five years is a long time. Four weeks from now marks the fifth anniversary of plotting my case from the floors of The Don Jail. Canada’s oldest jail. I am not the same person who started this case – a strong character constantly grows and evolves – what’s my age again?

The tenacious fucker who started this campaign – who would have driven off the Thelma and Louise cliff – has grown wiser. That passion to fight The Man is still there, I’ve just learned some valuable lessons by surrounding myself with leaders far smarter than I.

As with everyone in the lifeboats, it’s time for me too to step off the sinking ship and comply with Ontario Court of Appeal ruling. I am going to retreat nobly knowing my team raised the roof. We blazed a Trans-Canada size trail for others to make their own roads, paths and highways from. Our’s is not the only mountain on the range and there are more forming every day.

Here are a few lessons to ponder from Leadership Secrets of Attila the Hun:

  • No chieftain will ever win every encounter.
  • Should you become aware of defeat on the battlefield or in negotiations is impending, don’t deny it. Face it and take immediate action to minimize your opponents gain and get back to your cause.
  • Retreat is noble when continuance with the battle or the issue at hand would result in further losses or total annihilation of your resources. In order to return on another day you must salvage all the warriors and material possible.



  1. Anonymous on

    How do we fight back ?

  2. Johnny C on

    I’m stunned, and at a loss for words…. Thanks Matt for your Effort and if I were to draw on your analogy of hockey we could trade the goalie but your team was awesome, the referees made a BAD call.

  3. BrianKerr on

    Thank you Matt for fighting for freedom.

  4. Anonymous on

    Hey Matt you have the right to file for reconsideration for leave to appeal to the Supreme court of Canada

  5. gutrod on

    Conservative agenda to control the people. Never give more than 2 options to the enemy. In this case as in all others it is: My way or the highway!

  6. brian on

    What was this bid for? Are you still permitted to grow or smoke legally? Quite a hazy article.