University of Victoria Professor Susan Boyd, PhD, believes Canadians have received inaccurate information on marijuana policy for many years. Her findings will be revealed in an upcoming book.
Dr. Boyd linked Canada’s harsh marijuana laws to skewed messages presented by the media and police about those who supply the underground market.
“We can see from our drug-use statistics that Canadians use marijuana, and a small percentage of people use it regularly. So one way to continue with the drug enforcement law-and-order mandate is to talk about the dangerous of the growers, and that seems to have created some headway.”
In her forthcoming book, called “Killer Weed: Marijuana Grow Ops, Media and Justice,” the professor reviews 2,500 articles published by four major newspapers in British Columbia between 1995 and 2009.
The book highlights the inaccuracies and exaggerations made by the media about the underground industry, grow-ops and connections to gangs.
Dr. Boyd claims that politicians and police were complicit in the misrepresentation of facts. In some cases, studies were withheld by the government, including a 2011 Justice Department study that found only 5% of grow-ops had links to organized crime.
“This study wasn’t released by our federal government, and you could see why.”
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