Publisher’s Note: 2012: A YEAR OF HOPE, CHANGE AND STRUGGLE


Ted Smith
Around the world people are ready for change. This fight for freedom involves daily life-and-death clashes between government forces and citizens no longer willing to stand silent in the face of injustice.
In Canada, we are very lucky for the freedoms, rights, and privileges we enjoy, but those come at a price that must be paid every year. If we want society to improve, we have to fight harder, stronger, and faster with each passing year. Our very lives depend upon it.
The world can no longer afford to pay for the War on Drugs—that much is obvious—but how do we turn things around? How can you make a difference?
Every day you wake up you are faced with a fundamental question: Am I going to try to make the world a better place today, or am I in it for myself?
If you answer yes to the question, then you must decide how to invest your time in a way that satisfies your personal needs while helping an individual or group. If you generally do not even consciously consider the question, then you are not only missing out on the rewards that come from assisting others but you are in fact making the world a worse place for yourself and others.
Of course, if you have read this far you are likely among those trying to make the world a better place, surrounded by those who do not seem to care about anyone but themselves. It seems the world is full of selfish, senseless people, even in the cannabis industry. Turning people from self-centered consumers into caring, Earth-loving gardeners is a great challenge, but it lies at the very core of the major problems faced in the world today.
Telling your story is perhaps the greatest gift you can give to the world, and yourself, if you want to make it a better place to live. Sharing your history of cannabis use, run-ins with the law, the eccentric characters you have met, and what you know of the plant itself, can have a powerful impact upon others. This is especially true if you use cannabis for a medical purpose.
When sharing your story with people who support the War on Drugs, it is often best to avoid adding your opinion and simply stick to the facts. People who support throwing drug dealers in jail generally believe they have the moral authority and duty to protect themselves and their children. They believe they are doing good and do not like being told they are wrong. By sharing your cannabis story with prohibitionists, without pressuring them into thinking differently, you allow them to make up their own mind based upon the mounting evidence that contradicts their negative opinion of the herb. Appealing to their sense of compassion is much more effective than attacking them for their lack of it.
The internet provides endless opportunities for people to speak out more about cannabis, but there are many other times and places when cannabis lovers can help the herb to come out of the closet. Many cannabis enthusiasts feel unable to speak freely about cannabis. For them, the world wide web has become an opportunity to share knowledge about growing, producing extracts, and medical applications, without fear that their neighbors, family, and co-workers will discriminate against them.
Engaging with the media takes time and effort, but it is ultimately where one’s efforts have the greatest impact without actually risking arrest. If we are to continue building momentum towards legalizing cannabis, we need to relentlessly pursue all forms of media to accurately report the effects of prohibition. On one hand, we need to challenge the effectiveness of the continuous stream of reports of police busting grow-ops. On the other hand, we need reporters, editors, and publishers to learn about the extraordinary benefits cannabis can have in the hope that they will share that message in their work.
This will be especially important during the bakery trial of the CBC of C, and other medical clubs across Canada. These trials give us a chance to share our stories with the justice system, but we need to make sure that message is also heard in newspapers, radio, and television if we want to make the most of these opportunities. The courts and the general public are two of our greatest allies in our fight against the Conservative’s War on Drugs agenda.
A small amount of time and effort can have a much greater impact than you first anticipate. To maximize the benefits of your work you need to pick the right time. Well, this trial and the others that will happen across the country this year is that time. The ignorance that prohibition depends upon can only be defeated when we no longer accept our punishment silently. We need your help to speak out against the laws that choke the life out of individuals and governments alike.


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