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Mark Emery’s “Hidden” Political Agenda

By Hemp | March 19, 2002

more by Lee Morrison

Director, Victoria’s Hempology 101 Society.

I had a chance to speak to Marc Emery (Leader of the BC Marijuana Party) at the Third Annual Cannabis Convention brought to us by Hempology 101 and The Cannabis Buyers’ Clubs of Canada. It became obvious that he and I come from two diametrically opposed camps. Mark Emery is most certainly “right-wing”, and, although I am closer to the middle, my foot certainly does hang on the left side of the fence. Upon meeting him, I saw a man who is always on the political trail. His first error in judgement came when he referred to me as a “chick”. I turned to him and looked in shock. I, being a thirty-eight year old mother never thought of myself as a “chick” and certainly had no desire to be referred to as such. A very unprofessional term that suggests some familiarity we certainly do not share. When I told my twelve year old daughter this she said, “Why didn’t you punch him, mommy?” I’ll have to have a talk with her about non-violence. (At least my daughter was able to comprehend the social impropriety of the word.)

As Mr. Emery began to recruit individuals to run for his party, it became obvious that it made no difference who the person who would be representing his party. Simply that they would be running a pro- marijuana campaign. I’m sorry Mr. Emery, but would you really want your party being represented by perhaps a member of MABLA (Men and Boy Love Association). His response was, “We have not had any problems before.” Perhaps he fails to recognize the need for integrity within his political idealism. I, myself, feel it rather important to be aware of my running mates.

The largest bone of contention came up when I confronted Mr. Emery on his beliefs of privatized medicare. He made the erroneous statement that “the middle-class is the largest drain on the medical system”. Marc, I’m sorry to make you aware of some medical facts but the largest users of medicare are the individuals who are in their last two years of life. This is spent simply on preserving the quality of life in the final stages. It is ridiculous to assume that these are only middle and upper class individuals. Perhaps Marc Emery should also be made aware that the middle-class of the Baby Boomer generation is slowly disappearing as the cost of living continues to increase. Yes, indeed the rich are getting richer and the poor continue to become poorer.

Mr. Emery, privatized medicare does not work. Please observe the American system closer. The poor and lower middle-class are treated in county hospitals which are over crowded and often lack appropriate medical care. It is a system which is run on profit NOT on providing much needed services. It is a system where risk assessments are based not on the health of the individual but on the health of the administrators pocket books. One question that Mark never really did answer was “will the rich have access to medical services that modest incomes do not?”. How about an answer, Mr. Emery?

When I asked Mr. Emery what the difference between privatized medicare in his vision and the American System, his response was simple. “… we are Canadians, not Americans.” In response to this all I can say is simply, “EH?????”.

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