Friends, seems all the talk these days is about that Demon Weed, and one which is kind of catching the North by surprise, it would seem. Surprisingly, marijuana, cannabis, dope, has been around for as long as my generation recalls.
Back on the streets of Yellowknife, in the early-1970s, when it first made it presence known, you could get a ‘lid’ (ounce) of weed for $2. In fact, many simply refused to buy it when it went up to an astronomical $4, then to an impossible $6 an ounce. Now, almost half a century later people are talking about it as if the Dogs of War have just been set loose in our midst. The fact is, whether you smoke the stuff or not, some things are just here to stay.
People need and turn to different ways to relieve the stresses of modern life. Alcohol already accounts for almost 100 per cent of violent crimes, and no one even questions going to buy it any time they want. Our jails and prisons are filled to overflowing with victims of this one disaster.
So, when people get up at public meetings and start arguing about the right and wrongs of the humble weed, I just shake my head and wonder what’s really going on.
I think the one Tlicho lady in Behchoko is the one person who really sees what’s happening here.
She and others are asking the GNWT directly if we the people have the right, the jurisdiction, to set up for cannabis as a business, to at least make some money from what is coming along anyway.
The government, on the other hand, is fond of talking up its plans for what it calls land claims and self-government. Yet when Deline, for instance, asks about its own dispensers for cannabis it all of sudden becomes something “we can look into”.
Others, like Fort Good Hope and Kabami Tue, Colville Lake, where unemployment is a way of life, are automatically shut down. The real issue, is money, friends. The U.S. State of Colorado, for instance, brought in some $2.39 billion in 2015 alone, from the sale of weed, at a cost of only $23 million for the resources, including law enforcement, to make it happen.
This state alone is expecting the economic boom to top well over $100 billion in less than 10 years.
It’ll be interesting to see what the government has to say about oil now and compare it to the potential of the demon weed!
Mahsi, thank you.