Prime Minister Stephen Harper,
Conservative Party of Canada,
1204 – 130 Albert Street,
To the Honorable Stephen Harper :
I am a Canadian citizen who would like to thank you, in this open letter, for your national anti-drug strategy which has brought in stricter sentencing for drug offenders. Drug crime, and illegal drug consumption in our country, has been one of Canada's most serious problems. You have faced this problem head-on by increasing prison sentences for dealers, who sell to both adults and minors, and those who run grow operations.
As you are aware, there is quite a movement within Canada to legalize cannabis, the plant from which marijuana is made. I would like to voice my concerns as to why the legalization of cannabis would be detrimental to Canadians. The legalization of this drug would be detrimental to Canadians because, firstly, it is unhealthy. The short-term effects of marijuana include memory-loss problems, distortion of perception, motor coordination problems, increased heart rate, anxiety, etc. The long-term effects of marijuana use include proneness to cancer, suppression of the immune system, growth disorders, destruction of the lung fibres and lesions and mental health issues. Marijuana can cause and/or exacerbate anxiety, depression, suicidal tendency and schizophrenia. Marijuana smoke has 50% to 70% more cancer causing substances than tobacco smoke. Also, high doses of marijuana can produce psychotic reactions in users.
Secondly, the legalization of cannabis would be detrimental to Canadians because this drug is addictive. Users, both new and long-term, both young and old, become addicted to marijuana and many find it hard to quit using. Many lack the will to quit using it once addicted to the substance. Withdrawal effects include irritability, sleeplessness, decreased appetite, anxiety and drug craving.
This government has taken positive steps in addressing the problem of drug abuse in Canada. It is my sincere wish that further steps would be taken in the funding of drug law enforcement, and in educating the public on the harmful effects of illegal drug consumption. It is my sincere hope that marijuana will always be illegal in our country.