On July 1, Connecticut will become the 14th American state to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, without going so far as to legalize the drug. Canada continues to treat possession of marijuana for personal use as a crime, and to waste government resources on doing something about it.
A set of U.S. studies has found that, when cannabis was decriminalized, use did not rise any more than in states where possession remained a crime.
While there is no up-to-date estimate on the annual costs of enforcement, a reputable 2002 study put them at $300-million. All this for a “relatively harmless” drug, as the Ontario Court of Appeal has called it. Canada has not even been able to get its act together to make marijuana truly available for medicinal use, according to an Ontario judge who has ordered Ottawa to fix the medical-marijuana law.
Full article in the Globe and Mail here.