I was just watching a TV debate from an International News network.. they were debating recent revelations on the global Drug war. The debaters were; 2 on the law reform side(UK &US drug policy advisors) & 1 who sounded like they supported prohibition (not clear).
The following issues were raised :
1) Kofi Annan (previous U.N. head) has called for the end to the ‘War-on Drugs’, supported by several other senior people from U.N. & other similar bodies
2) Several nations in ‘Latin America’, Europe & 2 states in USA have already put in place law reform legislation (ranging from Decrim./Legalise/strict regulation)
3) Around 50% of USA prison population are there, on drug offences (dealing & USE)
4) During 40 years of current regime, over $1TRILLION have been effectively wasted on this failed policy. Drug use has apparently increased & the illegal black-market has boomed
5) Regulated markets will effectively eliminate : black-markets, gangsters, corruption
6) The money currently spent on prohibition, would be better spent on : Education, treatment (of addiction) & harm minimisation strategies
7) The person who appeared opposed to law reform (from Portugal, which has decrim. ALL drug use) was saying that use has hugely increased & that it was not working to reduce this trend. Those in favour of law reform said that reinstating prohibition would not have a positive affect & would do little/if nothing to actually stop use.
8) Both of the pro-law reformers stated that criminalising ‘drug users’ was more harmful than the drugs themselves. (reflecting comments by ex-USA Pres. J. Carter in 1977). Filling the prisons is NOT deterring people from drug use.
It certainly sounds like the tide maybe turning.. BUT to use another cliché: ‘its always darkest before the dawn !’
An alternative, rational approach is needed.. especially towards use of cannabis.