One of the golden quotes from the mouth and the Twitter account of Donald Trump … “Who knew that health care could be so complicated?” Hey Mr. President, just wait until you decide to do something about marijuana.
In this country, many of the people who voted for Justin Trudeau’s Liberals are starting to wonder when they will be able to stroll or drive to the corner store and buy a government-approved joint, and smoke it on the way home. ‘Complicated’ doesn’t begin to describe the issue of legalizing recreational pot. I would not be at all surprised if the PM has quietly fantasized about giving it the ‘electoral reform’ treatment. You know, “sorry but we just can’t do it because there’s no concensus.”
It’s a virtual certainty that Trudeau will keep his marijuana promise but there are still some huge questions to be answered. One of the most important is what on earth do we do with motorists who are high while driving? Manitoba is taking a few steps on this one, armed with some very interesting research. A rather less than scientific survey that was commissioned by Manitoba Public Insurance suggests that one in ten drivers in the province had evidence of drugs in their system, mostly marijuana or cocaine. The province wants to try out legislation that would authorize police to charge someone with driving while impaired because of drugs, but again … it’s complicated.
Even the medical folks can’t agree on what’s constitutes ‘impairment’ and how we measure it? There are many entrepreneurs out there who are working hard to perfect a whole new range of breathalysers. No doubt there are a much greater number of lawyers waiting to challenge the results of the first charges that are laid for ‘smoking and driving’.
And what about the cost of all this? If governments go for a ‘user pay’ approach, the price of a driver’s license and insurance could at least quadruple over the next ten years. Maybe it will be time to park the vehicle and hail an Uber.
I’m Roger Currie
Photo by GoToVan