Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Mail-order Marijuana

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In Stephen Harper's Canada, you and I can buy dope online.

By cash or money order, we can buy products like Cherry Bomb ("A great daytime smoke that leaves you relaxed, but clear headed, allowing you to complete tasks easily. The relatively mild headiness is complemented by a nice body stone.") or Black Hash ("This is the good old-fashioned hash you likely smoked back in the day using hot knives or with a pipe.") delivered right to your door.

No fuss, no muss.

The descriptions of Cherry Bomb and Black Hash come from two Canadian mainstream websites in the business of supplying medical marijuana and "top notch marijuana and marijuana infused products" to recreational users. They sell products from only growers they approve, not the Hells Angels or any other organized crime group.

They sell only to Canadian adults and both claim no one has ever been arrested for buying their products.

How the Harper government's new rules for the production and sale of medical marijuana will impact these two mail-order websites remains to be seen. 

The availablity of what kind of products they offer will likely change; what won't is that they they will still sell pot and hash, including pre-rolled joints, cookies and brownies (Each slice contains approximately one gram of high grade bud) and whatever else. Both have fairly extensive product lists.

The fact that these sites, one has been in business since 2010 and the other set up in the past year, is yet another sign the cannabis genie flew out out the bottle a long time ago.

Whatever happens to these websites, either by police or government, won't stuff her back in. She's gone and she ain't coming back.

When I started in the news business back in the mid-80s it was common for police to bust Winnipeg businesses that sold marijuana paraphernalia; pipes and bongs and whatever else deemed illegal.

That stopped in the '90s and only recently has it happened again in Winnipeg, but it appears the crackdown appeared more to do with bylaw issues that what they were selling, at least for now. 

Then there's what happening in U.S. states like Colorado and Washington that have approved the over-the-counter sale of marijuana products for recreational use. Washington D.C. recently approved a bill to decriminalize possession of marijuana.

Here in my little space in the cosmos, I often wonder why many of our politicians and police take such a hard line against recreational use of marijuana.

I wonder who they are exactly pandering to when they claim it's a gateway drug to harder narcotics like cocaine. If it really was, a lot of people I know would be raving junkies.

I've also never written or read a news story that said: A man high on marijuana robbed a gas bar overnight, stealing a bag of cheesies.

No, the people I know who who occasionaly use marijuana are more at home listening to Dark Side of the Moon in quad.

They don't do hard drugs. They don't rob gas bars. They just want to be left alone. 

For them this ongoing debate over more relaxed marijuana laws ended along time ago. It's gotten boring.

And there are more of us than the powers-that-be would think. 


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About Larry Kusch and Bruce Owen

Larry Kusch has been a journalist for 30 years, the last 20 with the Winnipeg Free Press. His is one of the newspaper's two legislative bureau reporters.

Raised on a Saskatchewan farm, he received an honours journalism degree from Carleton University in 1975.

At the Free Press, Larry has also worked as a general assignment reporter, business reporter, copy editor and assistant city editor.

Bruce Owen joined the Winnipeg Free Press in 1990 after four years working in other media.

He's worked in a number of positions at the Freep, including pet columnist, assistant city editor and police reporter. Right now he takes up space at the Manitoba legislature.

Bruce is one of five reporters who won a National Newspaper Award for the paper’s coverage of the 1997 Flood of the Century. He's also the recipient of the 1996 Volunteer Centre of Winnipeg Media Golden Hand Award and the 1995 Canadian Federation of Humane Societies Media Commendation Award.

In a past life Bruce worked at YMCA-YWCA Camp Stephens. He has a blog where he and others write about camp and the people who worked and played there.

You can also find Bruce on Twitter where he posts and retweets all sorts of stuff.

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