RCMP Ignore Pot-Smoking Stunt

RCMP Ignore Pot-Smoking Stunt
Posted by CN Staff on August 17, 2003 at 19:24:20 PT
Source: Prince George Free Press 
The Prince of Pot was in town last week - tokin' up out front of the local RCMP detachment - in an effort to get arrested. He failed.At 4:20 p.m. on Thursday, Marc Emery, leader of the Marijuana Party of Canada, lit up a joint the size of a frozen hotdog outside the RCMP station on Brunswick Street and waited to be arrested. A crowd of around 50 supporters applauded and joined Emery in the singing of O Canada. 
"I normally smoke out of a bong I bought locally," Emery said. "But I wasn't able to get a local bong, so I made a classic B.C. bomb out of B.C. bud."Local RCMP, while aware of Emery and his supporters gathered on a small piece of lawn between the station and the parking lot, did not attempt to arrest the pot politician.Emery, calling himself a patriot, is travelling across the country - in what he calls the Summer of Legalization Tour 2003 - smoking joints and trying to be arrested and charged because he believes marijuana is already legal under Canadian law. "It's not that I'm breaking the law, I'm celebrating our freedom - that the courts have given us under the Charter of Rights - that every last one of us here has a right to possess it like lemons, tomatoes, or lettuce."Emery claims marijuana has been legal in this country for over two years."Cannabis was suspended from the schedule of Controlled Drugs and Substances [Act] over two years ago," Emery said. "And consequently that makes marijuana legal and unregulated." In a handout written by Emery, he says marijuana is legal because of a July 2000, decision by the Ontario Court of Appeal, which ordered the Canadian Parliament to change or amend existing legislation. Emery says Parliament's failure to enact a new law, resulted in the removal of cannabis from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, in August 2001.Emery says that even though the drug is legal, "over 50,000 Canadians were charged with a cannabis offence." Emery claims a "staggering number" of people receive marijuana convictions annually - 30,000 to 35,000 a year for the past 35 years. And that over one million Canadians have criminal records from marijuana-related offences. "If you're a young person and you get a conviction you can not go to an American university, you won't be able to see family in the United States, you won't be able to work for a transnational company. . . a marijuana conviction is a particularly damaging thing to have on your record."He began his nine-province tour June 19, in Toronto and ended it Thursday in Prince George.Emery was arrested in five of the nine provinces he visited, most recently in Edmonton, Alberta. He claims he was held in "leg irons" in Regina, Saskatchewan. He has court dates in Regina and Edmonton on the charge of possession of marijuana.Emery was not charged in Ontario, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, or British Columbia.Emery was hoping to get arrested because he says he needs to come before a B.C. court, and he didn't want to do it in Vancouver or Victoria, where "they have smoke-outs 24 hours a day.""I didn't think it would be fair to try and do something there, where they're all used to it."Emery said the Prince George crowd was the second largest, after St. John's, Newfoundland. Source: Prince George Free Press (CN BC)Published: Sunday, August 17, 20003Copyright: 2003 BC Newspaper GroupContact: editor pgfreepress.comWebsite: Related Articles & Web Site:Pot-TV Crusader Challenges Drug Possession Charge Emery's Legalization Tour Hits Alberta Articles -- Marc Emery 
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