David, you are absolutely right that I am sure there are many causes for the violence we see in…
John the TIB

Drugs need to be legalized

People may be surprised I take this position. Legalization doesn’t mean we have it in the local WalMart. I have some ideas of a “midpoint” but I have strongly believed that the judicial system is not the way to deal with drugs.

What is the cost to society of making drugs illegal?

  • By interdicting drugs we raise the price which enhances the value of being in the business. It also means users have to pay a lot for drugs which drives them to crime.
  • Our crime rate is significantly higher simply because users have to commit crimes to make the money to use drugs which they might not if drugs were cheaper.
  • We have to devote a lot of police time and investigation to finding drug users, drug distribution network and to interdict
  • We have to devote a lot of our courts time to dealing with drug cases
  • We have to have a huge percentage of our prisons full of people who are simply drug users or people who commit crimes because of drug use or drug trafficking.
  • The money generated by drug crime causes corruption and many other crimes.
  • The crime of drug people results in people having to spend more on security at every level of society. Cars have to have lots of security, homes and we all have to be protective.
  • We get scared to go around our cities because of the large crime rates.
  • Foreign countries get dragged into our interdiction efforts and we spend huge amounts of money helping them try to stop drug production.
  • High amounts of corruption in central and South America occur because of our dependency on drugs and high prices destroying millions of lives there.
  • Drugs produced illegally are of lower quality and more likely to cause other health problems, deaths and other problems.

What are the benefits of our trying to stop drug usage?

  • We might be reducing the use of drugs by 10% from what it would be anyway.

Ever since I was a kid it has been apparent that if you want drugs you can get it. It is not clear to me that people choose to use or not use drugs based on the illegality.

The principal argument for drug laws seems to be that it is immoral to use drugs and that we have to stop the destruction of lives from drugs.

  • I am not convinced that we are deferring many people from using drugs as people seem to be able to get stuff and use it anyway easily.

So, what would happen if we legalized drugs?

This is the big question. Many countries have lesser crimes for drug use and prostitution. For instance, Australia and some other surprising countries have fewer laws in these areas and have virtually no problems with overuse.

How could we keep drugs from becoming prevalent?

This is where the creativity comes in. I have proposed ideas like saying

  • we will provide your drugs but you have to attend drug classes to get them.
  • You have to control when you use drugs and how much or face penalties.
  • There is no advertisement and sale of drugs funds advertisements and programs to fight drug use
  • Committing crimes and using drugs would be met with stern measures so you should be nice if you use drugs or you will get extra harsh sentences if you do something bad

Maybe others can come up with creative ways to reduce the incentive but my argument is we distort other countries massively with our drug trade and drug policies. Our drug interdiction causes millions of lives to be damaged and a lot of corruption. It causes more crime. We need to stop the insane war against drugs. It didn’t work for the prohibition and it isn’t working for other drugs.

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