My Response to Jon Ferry’s ‘Boot Camps’

Regarding Jon Ferry’s op-ed “Boot camps would be more ‘restorative justice‘” (Province, Dec. 11): I am currently serving a 6-month sentence for non-violent, victim-free herbal crimes (cannabis and magic mushroom possession with the purpose of trafficking), and I disagree with Ferry’s view that my herb sales “victimize” the community.

In Holland, people have the freedom to legally buy and sell cannabis and magic mushrooms with no evidence of victimization. Holland has the lowest rate of use of cannabis of any European country, yet is the most free in its distribution. We can learn from that. Freedom makes use more moderate, prohibition increases the dangers and levels of improper use.

If hard drugs like heroin or cocaine were prescribed by doctors and distributed by pharmacists (as heroin has been prescribed in the NAOMI program in Vancouver); if alcohol wasn’t sold in the mass media as an aphrodisiac, and if tobacco wasn’t grown using radioactive chemical fertilizers, there would far fewer drug victims.

The true victims in the drug war are the prisoners who are brutalized and humiliated daily and those who suffer from black market related harms.

The true victimizers are drug war propagandists like Mr. Ferry who perpetuate hate against people exercising their natural right to plants and drugs.

David Malmo-Levine



  1. Spanner McNeil on

    I’ve been sending you mail, David. I’ve sent three letters. Letters and photocopies. I just got one returned back today by Canada Post in a plastic bag from Nov. The back of the letter was stamped ‘Mail Considered to be contraband.’ and then hand written, ‘No Photocopies.’ I followed all the rules, no paperclips, staples, liquid paper etc. It was a six page black and white magazine article. Anyway I will continue trying. I really thought photocopies were ok. You’re a hard man to reach. Take care. Have a mildly adequate festive season. Best wishes, Spanner.

  2. Anonymous on

    You always say it best David…oxo peace

  3. Anonymous on

    Someone should send that all-Canadian bullet-headed saxon mother’s son Ferry to a freekin bootcamp in Guatemala (thanks, John). Sick mang!

  4. Anonymous on

    Its sad that even got printed. We shouldn’t have to respond to this delusional draconian nonsense. Hope you are doing well David.

  5. Anonymous on

    Sentencing in criminal trials should be based on how the perpetrator’s unlawful activities have impacted the victim’s life. The victim(s) should be front and centre.

    Because our courts ignore victims, they are empowered to hand out arbitrary sentences that serve no purpose when there is no victim, and go soft on the perpetrator when there is a victim. It’s backwards. People who hurt others should have to face the music. Instead, violent criminals are given a pat on the back while non-violent criminals who haven’t hurt anyone are given jail sentences. This is how our courts promote and condone violence.

  6. DML Fan on

    Just as Arthur pulled Excalibur, the sword, from the large rock, and later became King, (a task that no one else could accomplish) We need someone with similar abilities to pull these ignorant assholes heads out of their asses. With the sound that a cork makes as it’s removed from a wine-bottle, magnified appropriately.

    OK, OK, John Ferry and the multitudinous ignoramuses just like him are the equivalent of a lot of small swords in rocks but it’s going to take some King Arthur like hero’s like David to do just that. I hope as you pull their heads out of their assholes you hear the “wine-cork sound” playing loudly in your head.

    Onward and upward to you, Sir David, may you be blessed with magical protection from the many dangers you find in your travels, including your current location, as you go about your quest.

    DML Rocks!

  7. Anonymous on

    Well put sir.