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OUR VIEW: At the U.S. border, do not ask, do not tell
Will the words of Cathy McLeod and Justin Trudeau come back to burn them the next time they try to enter the United States?
Much was made of the federal Liberal leader’s admission that he had smoked pot while serving as an MP — a practise that remains illegal in Canada and the U.S. Shortly thereafter, during an interview with Black Press, McLeod, the Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo Conservative MP, admitted to smoking marijuana while in university.
On the Labour Day weekend, the omnipotence of border guards was again on full display as news outlets reported on the experience of Jessica Goldstein, a 30-year-old White Rock student. She managed to get herself banned from Uncle Sam’s land when she replied to a question at the border.
Goldstein was asked: Have you ever smoked marijuana?
She replied she had, just the week before, in fact. She also admitted taking magic mushrooms and ecstasy and now finds herself on the outside looking into the United States.
The question is: Will McLeod, Trudeau, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and the many other politicians who have admitted smoking a joint be subject to the same Draconian response from the United States?
Probably not, simply because of who they are and what they do. If you are a simple student going to a concert in the U.S., admitting to smoking a joint can change your life for the worse.
If you are an MP going to a conference in the U.S., sharing an identical admission at the border will result in you getting to that meeting.
Why? Because life is not fair and because not all people are subject to the same punishment when breaking the law. Goldstein’s greatest crime was not smoking pot — it was being foolish enough to admit as much at the border.
– Black Press