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Drugs

Why Hong Kong should not follow Canada on legal marijuana move

  • This delivers a blatantly wrong message to the public that the government now encourages drug abuse
PUBLISHED : Friday, 26 October, 2018, 7:00pm
UPDATED : Friday, 26 October, 2018, 7:00pm

I am writing to express my concern regarding the legalisation of cannabis in Canada (“O, cannabis! Here’s how Canadians are celebrating pot legalisation”, October 18). It is indeed worrying that Canada has followed in the footsteps of Uruguay, and several US states, in legalising the use of recreational marijuana. From the perspective of a student, it is a dangerous move, since this delivers a blatantly wrong message to the public that the government now encourages drug abuse.

I acknowledge the fact that cannabis is a painkiller for suffering medical patients, but definitely it would not be sensible when it comes to recreational use. Marijuana causes addiction and other adverse impacts on public health, so granting marijuana legal status could leave future generations in a vulnerable position. Consequently, potential abusers would have much easier access to these drugs. In the long run, society will pay the price.

Advocates claim that marijuana should be legalised because it is less addictive than caffeine, which is present in common beverages such as coffee. But when marijuana also brings negative health impacts, we should take the social costs into account.

‘Say no’ to drug legalisation despite Canada decision: WHO chief

There is no reason to legalise a drug for recreational use just because it appears to be less harmful than other substances in common foodstuffs. Drug abuse would be promoted, as the addicted no longer have to obtain marijuana secretly. Moreover, the move will definitely give authorities a hard time in controlling the flow of recreational drugs and cracking down on drug dealers.

By the same token, I can see no reason for the Hong Kong government to let e-cigarettes be sold legally. Moreover, the government should also take aim to ultimately outlaw all cigarettes in our city. We cannot afford this gamble.

Anfield Tam, Quarry Bay