Mr. Speaker, an individual who met with our caucus, and probably with many different parliamentarians, told us about the crisis that we have in the demographics with an aging population and a health care system that, in the way it is going right now, will not be able to sustain itself.
We constantly need to be looking for ways that we can tell Canadians that we need to be very mindful of the health that we are in. We have set up wellness clinics because we recognize the value of them. We have other people who are busy, as the member said, educating us about the harmful effects of many things.
We are educating Canadians that obesity is harmful. We educate Canadians that drinking may be harmful and that drinking and driving may be harmful. We educate Canadians that smoking is harmful, and rightly so. We recognize that lung cancer, emphysema and other illnesses are caused by inhaling any type of smoke into our lungs and using it as a drug.
The member is right. This drug is harmful and we need to have a balanced strategy. There is no strategy. We need to have a balanced plan. There is no plan. We need to educate. Let us pour money into the resources we need to education people on the harmful effects of drug use, including marijuana. We need to have more resources for enforcing the law.
The RCMP and police officers have told me that we are basically handcuffing them while telling them to go out on the streets and uphold the law. They do not have the ability to detect if someone is driving impaired by drugs. They can tell if someone is under the influence of alcohol through tests but not if they use marijuana.
The member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin mentioned that some of the statistics show that there are more Canadians who have smoked marijuana than tobacco. I have not seen those statistics but in talking to a lot of young Canadians, they know the harmful effects tobacco has on them. If we ask them about marijuana, they say that we have legalized it. In the high schools they believe we have moved toward legalizing it.
I am not sure if it is that we have not done our job as far as educating the public. I am not sure if it is the media that has just run with this story of marijuana for so long and the whole question of decriminalization and legalizing from the Senate and other places that we have not done our job, but young Canadians feel like there is no problem with marijuana. Our courts have turned a blind eye to it; 780 charges stayed in a small community in northern Alberta. If this law goes through I guarantee those guys will get a free walk, and it is not right.
We need to make sure there is a balanced plan in how we tell our young people and all Canadians about the harmful effects of this drug.