With the passing of omnibus crime bill C-10 in March, pot activists are saying this year’s 4/20 smoke-in on Parliament Hill is getting political.
“We wanted to make it more involved this year,” said Graham Kittmer, of Carleton University group Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy.
“We want to lose the stigma of the stoner,” he said.
Kittmer also pointed out that local medicinal marijuana activist Russell Barth and law reform group NORML Canada’s Executive Director Marc Boris St-Maurice are set to talk pot policy at the event.
“I found this year that I got much more involved in cannabis activism,” Kittmer said. “The omnibus crime bill that passed recently was the push over the edge that I needed.”
Although the new laws don’t target pot users directly, Kittmer said that its tougher stance on small-time traffickers flies in the face of Stephen Harper’s pronouncement at the Summit of the Americas last week that the war on drugs is “not working”.
“There’s still this stigma that’s attached to the plant, that it kills people and kills your brain cells,” he said. “I don’t try to put it in people’s faces. It’s not educating people to just say it’s an awful drug. Studies show it’s not nearly as harmful as cigarettes and alcohol.”