Let’s do our best to protect our children
I write a short reply to the opinion by Cheryl Pooley published in The Royal Gazette on March 1.
I thank Ms Pooley for taking the time to express her opinion, even if I disagree with much of what she has written.
The Cannabis Licensing Act will have broad implications on our community and we should be prepared for them!
It would be regrettable to say the least that in the future we look back and bemoan the passing of this Bill for any reason. When I spoke, I raised questions about the need for social services that are struggling, the creation of more bureaucracy, compliance questions, the continuance of the “black market”, the view of the legislation by the Bermuda Police Service and how they would enforce the legislation. I also questioned what concerns Britain might have with the Bill.
It is an Opposition’s job to cast a critical eye on all legislation, and that is exactly what we did in this case.
I support the decriminalisation of cannabis, medicinal cannabis and also efforts to remove people from the “stop list” for use of small amounts of cannabis; there are those who have been on that list for many years.
During my comments in Parliament, I closed by saying: “I have always had reservations about the legalisation of cannabis. I will not support it for my family or my children. But they can make decisions when they are old enough and, hopefully, with the upbringing they get, they will make the best decisions for themselves. Any drug we take has its consequences, Mr Speaker, and we need to be aware of those.”
So, Ms Pooley, I do not require a “spliff” to relax; I do that in many other healthy ways. I invite you to listen to the debate in the House on the Bill and specifically what I said during this debate for a better understanding.
Or, if you choose, call me for a discussion, as I am always available as I serve the people.
MICHAEL H. DUNKLEY