Having studied the apparent reasons & motives behind the people & issues that led to the current ‘War on Drugs’ (esp. Cannabis prohibition).. on the other side, are the ‘voices of dissent’:
1) The La Guardia commission.. setup by the NY city major to look scientifically at the allegations that were used in support of the ‘Marijuana Tax Act 1937’. Between 1940-44 a series of physical & psychological tests were conducted by a panel of doctors & psychiatrists. The test subjects were prison inmates (who volunteered to participate). The Final report effectively opposed/refuted every one of the alleged harms of cannabis.
I read that Comm. Anslinger ordered his police to seize & destroy every copy of the report & the politicians who had been involved in the original legislation, quietly fell into line with the prohibitionists & refused to accept the commissions findings.
2) The Shafer commission.. in 1972 President Richard Nixon, is order to stop the rising voices of dissent.. put together a staunch group of right-wing politicians & other ‘experts’ to bolster & confirm the alleged ‘harms of cannabis’. BUT to the surprise of the President, the commission found that prohibition was NOT the best option for dealing with cannabis. Again the commissions report was ignored & dismissed. I hear the report (like the La Guardia comm.) was destroyed.
3) Since the 1970s there have been many voices calling for law reform.. BUT most of the USA Presidents & other international ‘power brokers’ have just said ‘NO !’
4) In 1998 the NZ parliament convened a parliamentary select committee to review the cannabis laws. The recommendation being ‘decriminalisation’.. BUT I hear that the head of the USA FBI arrived in NZ & had an emergency meeting with, the then Prime Minister. At the conclusion of the meeting, not only was any talk of law reform discontinued, but the laws became more harsh & law enforcement, more draconian !
We can all become understandably frustrated by this nonsense.. BUT maybe we should just be demanding an EXPLAINATION of the reasons why this failed policy just goes on & on & on & on ? (not actually solving or achieving anything !)