What is the difference between “legalization” and “decriminalization” of marijuana

At BCproduct.com, we promote a “chill” lifestyle, because we realize that to achieve health and happiness, we must chill out and reduce our stress.

However, we also promote a “knowledgeable” lifestyle. We know that our customers are intelligent, intuitive, and insightful.

For that reason, we thought that today we would explain the difference between legalization and decriminalization of marijuana, as we know it, in Canada today.

Bait and Switch

We feel that the Canadian government has misled its citizens by using the terminology “legalize” rather than doing what we all think of when we think “legalization”.

What we truly imagine when we hear “legalization” is DECRIMINALIZATION.

  • We imagine a world where the people we love don’t get arrested for possessing or growing pot.

  • We imagine a world where our tax dollars are not wasted on arresting and convicting marijuana users and small “mom and pop” growers, or “craft growers.”

If it’s not broken, don’t fix it

Craft growers are small business owners we know and trust. They are our current suppliers. They are running an effective and lucrative industry right now, without any regulatory oversight. Wow, right?

The fact of the matter is, we don’t need any more regulatory oversight than we already have. Taking the laws away that criminalize the industry will make us subject to labour and tax laws. That’s really all we want and need. Decriminalization.

To help you understand the difference between “legalization” and “decriminalization”, consider the following…

In a legalized environment, many users and craft growers will still be arrested, fined, jailed, and given criminal records because they will be unable to live up to the new regulations that will be imposed.

For instance, a marijuana user may be arrested and convicted for owning more than the amount allowed by the government. Sound familiar?

Craft growers may not be able to apply for a business license if they have a previous criminal record from marijuana convictions or other convictions in the past.

What is now a great and profitable industry for people with criminal records who still want to live comfortable, lawful lives…will become a maze of bureaucratic closed doors.

If they grow without a license, they are breaking the law. If they grow outside of any of the regulations set out by our government, they can go to jail. Our taxes will still be paying for marijuana convictions.

In a decriminalized environment, craft growers could conduct their businesses in the same way any other small business owner does.

They could run it under their own names. They could grow their business as large as they want, as long as they claim it and pay taxes and operate under labour and tax laws already in place for small business owners.

In contrast, a “legalized” environment creates a system where the government can pick and choose who gets to grow or possess marijuana to any degree. (Sound familiar?)

History tells us that our government will give that permission to their corporate crony friends.

As this civil liberties lawyer points out:

“Meanwhile, Canadians imagine that cannabis will be legal soon. Legal like coffee or vodka or orchids. Leeeegal. However, under this DOJ doozie, the front door of your humble abode can be separated from its hinges, by a federal-provincial vice squad (Project Leaf Blower!!), without a warrant, if they think a warrantless search is urgent.”

We’re told that we need these regulations to ensure that we are getting quality, tested products. Sounds good until you realize we’re already getting quality, tested products under the illegal system!

The average citizen is already protected because all industries are subject to standard labour and tax regulations for which even the most under-the-radar business owner is subject to if a complaint is made.

In other words, even if craft growers a.k.a. small business owners a.k.a. everyday people like you and I, are doing something that is illegal under standard labour and tax laws, we are subject to the laws of our land where business is concerned.

In other words, we don’t need new laws to govern the cannabis industry. We already have laws in place to regulate the industry from a worker’s and even a Canada Revenue Agency point-of-view.

What legalization does, is it creates new laws that further criminalize the industry and people who partake! In fact, the new laws also give police more power to search vehicles and breathalyze average citizens for no reason.

As stated in this article:

“a second piece of legislation related to the legalization of marijuana, C-46, also passed this week and received royal assent earlier Thursday morning…over new powers it will give police to stop drivers for mandatory alcohol screening without needing reasonable suspicion of impairment, as well as the creation of three new impaired driving offences.”

Is this the “legalization” we dreamed of, folks?

Certainly not. Yet this is what legalization looks like in Canada.

Trudeau didn’t lie when he told us he would legalize marijuana use in Canada.

He just didn’t explain that the people we know and love and trust with our weed needs will continue to be criminalized.

He let us believe that we were getting decriminalization – the rescinding of bad laws around marijuana use and industry. But that’s not what we’re getting. What we are getting is RE-criminalization.

Time will tell how it all plays out but one thing is for certain…Canadians are not stupid. We may be high, but we are NOT stupid. 😉 Peace.