Dear Prime Minister Trudeau,
March 26, 2016
Congratulations on winning the election! I’ve been a consistent liberal voting citizen of the U.S. We both appreciate the views of liberalism, but I believe our families share other links.
I am writing to let you know how disheartened I am that you plan to legalize marijuana in your beautiful Canada. Marijuana irrevocably harmed my family in a way that we never anticipated and will never recover from.
My husband and I were long admired for our families’ longevity and vitality. Until Oct ’09, it seemed that life was as good as it gets our youngest son was accepted into a prestigious aeronautical university and our oldest son, Shane, age 23, enjoyed working as a Certified Residential Electrician, aspiring to eventually acquire ownership. Shane married his longtime girlfriend in a magical wedding on a Southern California college campus. It was the crowning moment for me, as a mother, to see the limitless potential ahead for my son and his bride because the world was their oyster.
Except two months later, Shane suffered a sudden, abrupt alteration in reality. We found our son in the middle of the night suffering visual and auditory hallucinations. Nothing could prepare parents for the trauma of witnessing our 6’4” first-born son, known for his zest for life, big heart, infectious smile, strong work ethic, and gregarious personality go into this overnight loss of reality. Shane admitted and tested positive to only one substance at the hospital: THC. Shane’s words to us, his parents, that horrific night as he tried to jump out of our moving car, asking if we saw the bombed out buildings, were “Mom, I know you don’t think I use drugs but I just smoke pot, it’s harmless- just a herb”. I knew from my son’s history- always healthy, never a day of mental instability, with NO family history of any severe mental illness- that this drug was anything but harmless.
I had a flashback to an article I had read about a prominent person who had admitted that each psychotic episode she suffered it was precipitated by smoking a lot of marijuana just before. It’s what prompted me to begin researching “marijuana and psychosis.” Back in 2009, PubMed listed over 900 scientific studies!!! But guess what? The psychiatric facility where we took Shane, and all its psychiatrists, nixed the link, insisting that “marijuana can’t trigger psychosis.” Shane was diagnosed with a mood disorder instead of what it should have been “THC-induced-psychosis.” Since then I’ve been on a quest to expose the sad but growing stats in North America: Psychosis from potent strains of pot – and its byproducts- are alarmingly on the increase, yet the truth isn’t reaching our kids. Most young people don’t even consider marijuana a drug, Mr. Prime Minister.
It’s the interviews that your mother, Margaret, has given that I’d like to remind you about: marijuana isn’t harmless for some brains. I appreciate your mom’s mission work. One of her quotes “quitting cannabis was the start of my recovery from mental illness” speaks volumes. Sadly, we are losing our young people, like my son who died by suicide on Jan 13, 2102, seven months in cessation from marijuana (the highest risk of suicide is six months) – because they aren’t hearing this message. Using marijuana is a game of Russian roulette and both our families surely have this catastrophic predisposition, but who would know???
Your campaign promises include marijuana legalization, but do you realize use by those 18 and over jumped 46% in the first two years after legalization for recreational use in Colorado, and now Colorado leads the nation in marijuana use in every age group? (NSDUH reports, www.SAMHSA.gov). Even use by those in more vulnerable age groups (ages 12-17) has increased by 20%. If your child was among those 20%, how would you feel? With medical marijuana legalization, the Canadians have one of the highest rates of marijuana use in the world. Don’t you fret about the altered mental health changes to the brain, particularly for ages under 26? One day it could be your precious child who uses marijuana, only to have this drug trigger such a devastating psychotic disorder. I implore you to seek the truth about MARIJUANA HARMS and the consequences for your country. Losing a child or sibling is life-altering, something you wouldn’t want to happen to anyone whom you were elected to protect.
Lori Robinson M.S., R.D., C.S.R.
Media Release April 4th. 2016 SAM Canada takes it to Margaret Trudeau.
Smart Approaches to Marijuana Canada – SAM Canada asks Margaret Trudeau for an apology over her reckless remarks made on Saturday at the St. Francis Xavier Catholic Secondary School Meeting in Mississauga.
As Canada’s most vocal organization arguing against the legalization of marijuana our organization supports the United Nations position on drug prevention and controls, calls Trudeau misinformed and ignorant of the mountain of evidence that now exists that shows that marijuana use into the mid to late twenties can cause irreversible brain damage and by doing so reduce a young person’s education and economic potential. Marijuana risk factors continue through life for many serious ailments and impediments. The bottom line is marijuana has been proven not safe for human consumption and this is backed up by evidence based science.
Not only did Trudeau get it wrong when she suggests the age of 18 is the age when the human brain is fully developed but she then suggests and then chuckles that after age 18 it is fine to go ahead and use.
Not only are marijuana products illegal in this country, the use of these products puts the user and nonuser in the path of harm from a number of risk factors, including an increased risk of accidents on roadways, in the workplace and in the home.
That this speech was given at a Catholic school is further puzzling given the position of Pope Francis. – the Catholic Church does not support legalization.
Margaret Trudeau said in her speech to school trustees – she began using marijuana in the late 60’s. Given her birth date is 1949 that would put her over the age of 18 and it still messed her up – by her own admission. This throws out her entire argument that it is fine to use after age 18.
The question for Trudeau is this. How does a liberal support a public health policy that does not address social justice and the role of the governments to address and protect the individual from poverty, ill health and education. The rights of the individual to do what ever it is they please must be tempered with respect for the responsibility we have to one another under our social contract. To miss this puts her in the league of elitists.
Studies that have shown that cannabis was associated with reduced income and education, increased welfare dependence, crime, and lower relationship satisfaction (Arria, Garnier-Dykstra, Caldeira, et al., 2013;Arria, Garnier-Dykstra, Cook, et al., 2013; Arseneault, Moffitt, Caspi, Taylor, & Silva, 2000; Brook et al., 2013; Brook, Zhang, & Brook, 2011; Fergusson & Boden, 2008; Horwood et al., 2010; Pedersen, 2011; Schmidt et al., 1998; Silins et al., 2014).
We have contacted the institution that asked her to be their keynote and are advising them to also ask for an apology given the errors Trudeau made. Reducing the perception of risk with speeches like this, made by public figures, is part of the reason Canada has such high rates of use among adolescents.
Margaret Trudeau, mother of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, used a speech at a Mississauga Catholic high school Saturday to advocate for the regulation of marijuana. In a wide-ranging and unvarnished talk about her decades-long battle with mental illness, the best-selling author and former wife of prime minister Pierre Trudeau, stressed that evidence shows that marijuana is damaging to children’s brains.
Interview with Margaret Trudeau (wife of deceased former Prime Minister Trudeau and current mother of just elected Prime Minister,Justin Trudeau) Interview was at a press conference in Vancouver for the Canadian Mental Health Association, 2007. “Quitting cannabis has been an important part of my recovery from mental illness”. “Marijuana can trigger psychosis,” said Trudeau. “Every time I was hospitalized it was preceded by heavy use of marijuana.”