To the editor:
Re: " Vancouver city hall coddles, protects poisonous pro-dope lobby," May 9.
Mark Hasiuk's last column was a toxic, hateful piece of journalism. Under the civil and legal argument that the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users is not playing by the rules (apparently it operates without a permit), he feels completely justified to demonize and vilify the people and work of VANDU.
Maybe Mr. Hasiuk is perturbed to see active drug users care for one another by creating a welcoming space for education, support and political organizing in the midst of tremendous public hostility. Or perhaps he is troubled to see drug users, whom he and others clearly hold in utter contempt, take action against the structures of oppression and death inscribed in the legal policies and social consciousness of the status quo.
VANDU is a powerful social justice movement among the most despised and impoverished population of our city, and despite Mr. Hasiuk's efforts, it is not disappearing any time soon.
Dave Diewert, Vancouver