Potheads Fare Worse Than Child Rapists in Canadian Crime Bill

 

If youíre contemplating a life of crime in Canada, now is the time to switch from growing marijuana plants to preying on children. If the Conservatives pass their omnibus crime bill, you will get off with a much lighter sentence.

The Province points out, “Under the Tories’ omnibus crime legislation tabled Tuesday, a person growing 201 pot plants in a rental unit would receive a longer mandatory sentence than someone who rapes a toddler or forces a five-year-old to have sex with an animal.”

Politics, Not Safety

After years of having his crime bills defeated by the opposition, Stephen Harper is on the verge of getting his revenge. Never mind that the crime rate has been steadily dropping. Forget the failed experiment in tougher sentencing in the U.S., where the cost of incarceration is so great even conservatives are calling for reform. Harper promised to get tough on crime, and he plans to keep his word even if the social and economic costs far outweigh the benefits.

Bill C-10, the Safe Streets and Communities Act lumps together nine bills that failed to pass when the Tories were a minority government. Among the omnibus billís most contentious measures are those that will strip judges of discretionary power and swell the prison population.

House arrest would be abolished, though it has proven effective for nonviolent offenses. Mandatory minimum sentences would be imposed for drug offenses, including six months for anyone caught growing six or more marijuana plants. And anyone with three offenses will never be eligible for parole.

Does Canada Need This Bill?

Crime in Canada is at its lowest rate since 1973, when the country had only 12 million people. Violent crimes are down. Young people are committing fewer crimes, and even property crimes have dropped. So safety is clearly not the driving force here.

The Tories are also not saying how much the measures will cost, but The Globe and Mail estimates Corrections Canada “will spend more than $450-million this year implementing just one of the Conservative government’s new tough-on-crime measures – the Truth in Sentencing Act – as Canada’s prison system expands to accommodate a rush of new inmates.” This is at a time when Corrections Canada already has a $3 billion budget, prisons are overcrowded and the country’s economy is still vulnerable.

On Tuesday the Tories moved to restrict debate, clearing the way to ram the bill through Parliament without having to put a dollar figure to it or allow for real discussion. The agenda here is politics, not crime, and the impact will reverberate†throughout one of the safest countries in the world.

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Photo from USFS Region 5 via Flickr Creative Commons

90 comments

Linda E.
Linda E.3 years ago

We need to change the name of the crime. Molest means to bother. They are child rapists. They should be labeled as that on file, in public. When this change occurs, society will look more realistically at what is on our streets, what punishments they are NOT getting, but should, and what compensation they need to pay these kids for counselling, medical treatment, pain and sufferring. They are the worst of society. The absolute WORST.

Warren Osborn
Warren Osborn4 years ago

Fascism

Diane Stollger
Diane Stollger4 years ago

Unbelievable. No one should go to prison for life no matter how many non-violent marijuana offenses he has. How can you even put that in the same category as someone that would molest a child? Conservative crap!

Brian F.
Brian F.4 years ago

Canada really made a terrible mistake voting this conservative Harper asshole. From the horrible enviromentally destructive tar sands, to trying to become like prison nation America, with tough drug laws, Harper is taking Canada down the same failed path that destroyed America, with corporate greed, and avarice.

Lisa D'arcangelis
Lisa Plunkett4 years ago

OMG that is AWFUL.

Mark D.
Mark D.4 years ago

I'd never trust Canada on anything, it's a miserable country run by socialist government tyrants who are the worst excuses for humanity in the world. Harper is elected to be at the top of that crminal gang. Canada's simply one the cruelest, environmentally destructive, arms dealing, psychotic places on earth. Hordes of Canadian killers jump at any chance to torture and massively slaughter wildlife or run off to any war right behind NATO or US. Canadians heritage is same as the rest of the savage convicts who escaped from Europe to steal land and colonize every native tribe on Earth.

John Doe
james rico4 years ago

some people are only helped with pot for illness how unfair to force them into the hands of crooked greedy allopaths with their harmfull worthless drugs and false promises and lies

Bob Hearns
Bob Hearns4 years ago

way to go conservative voters! this is what you voted for. what a brain dead society. i guess we're trying to prove that we can be dumber than US republican voters.

Lika S.
Lika S.4 years ago

Canada needs April's Law!

it makes no sense to make it that way. Who cares about pot? I care about our children, especially to not abuse them.

Diane L.
Diane L.4 years ago

Strange indeed, since every time I've been in Canada (B.C.), dealers were very openly selling pot on every street corner. Nobody cared. WHEN ON EARTH are politicians going to wake up and stop criminalizing something that is no more harmful than many legal things, specifically alcohol and cigarettes? Even soda has far more negative health effects than pot. I think osteoporsis (growing by leaps & bounds and especially amongst men) is a far worse risk than getting a bit laid back and having the munchies at home, and most "pot heads" smoke at home, simply to relax. The medical benefits for those with MS, undergoing "chemo" and other forms of chronic pain is beyond description! Ask Montel Williams........he has MS, has been busted several times at airports for having "pot paraphenalia" on him.