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News (Media Awareness Project) - CN ON Edu: Cannabis And The Crown
Title:CN ON Edu: Cannabis And The Crown
Published On:2012-01-23
Source:Brock Press, The (CN ON Edu)
Fetched On:2012-01-28 06:00:44

At the biannual Liberal Party convention, on Jan. 15, party delegates
voted in favour of the legalization of marijuana and against
separation from the British monarchy.

These two proposals were heatedly contested within the party - a
party trying to find platforms that will win over Canadians to help
pull it back up from the results of the last federal election.

The vote as to whether Canada should separate from the monarchy was
close, out of 1,200 delegates who voted, 67 per cent were opposed to
separation - a similar split is seen among Canadians, who, according
to a National Post survey, are 43 per cent in favour and 43 per cent
are opposed, with 14 per cent having no specific opinion.

The vote to potentially put the legalization of marijuana on the
party platform was less divisive with 77 per cent of delegates in favour.

According to a statement from Samuel Lavoie, President of Young
Liberals of Canada, while the majority of delegates voted in favour
of legalization, that does not necessarily mean that the proposal
will become part of the Official Party Platform for 2015.

Emily Miller, third year Brock University Political Science major,
said that she believes that by advocating the legalization of
marijuana the Liberal Party is attempting to regain followers after a
poor showing in the last federal election.

"It is being advertised as a measure against the 'war on drugs',
[however] it is a much more effective wedge issue with which the
Liberals can gain support," said Miller.

Since 2001, when Canada legalized marijuana for medical purposes, the
Liberal party has been in favour of the decriminalization of
marijuana, however, this vote may put them alongside the NDP in the
out right legalization of the drug.

So far the only party which includes legalization in its platform and
also has members in the House of Commons is the Green Party.

Liberal Party officials have said that abolishing the monarchy is far
more divisive than the legalization of marijuana.

"The vote to maintain the connection with the monarchy says to me
that those voting have some respect for the integral part that the
monarchy played in Canadian history," said Miller.

Miller also pointed out that Aboriginal treaties are typically with
the crown, and separating could then therefor nullify these treaties.

"[They] are trying to avoid the complications that would stem from
abolishing the monarchy including Aboriginal treaties [...] and the
possibility of a politicized head of state."

Although the votes have been cast by the Liberal delegates, whether
or not either of these propositions make it into the next party
platform is still up for debate and rests on the party leader.
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