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Author Topic: Valid Arguments on Whether Drugs Should Be Legalized for Personal Consumption  (Read 2917 times)
Lazer
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February 17, 2012, 08:08:57 AM
 #1

Should drugs be legalized for personal consumption?

Why or why not?

Personally, I don't see anything wrong with allowing people to do what they want to themselves as long as it doesn't hurt others.
However, I most certainly disapprove of the fact that that decision is, in most countries, no longer up to the individual but to their government!?!?

So for example, why should the State say, "You are allowed to drink alcohol until your liver fails, but not a sip of absinthe. You can smoke nicotine until your lungs rot, but you are not allowed to inhale THC. You may eat high-cholesterol-ed junk and fast food until your heart attacks, but you may not ingest a single psychedelic mushroom"?

What is the justification?

And to go a step further, why not allow individual cultivation/production for personal use?
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February 17, 2012, 10:39:16 AM
 #2

1) It is ineffective and a waste of money.
- I would like to see how many people would check a box once a year saying "give $100 to enforce existing drug laws"
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February 17, 2012, 02:22:48 PM
 #3

The real, non-advertised justification is probably money.  When an act is prohibited, it necessarily becomes illegal and then if the demand of it remains high enough (demand for drugs is never going to go down -- this is a fact that most people are finally realizing), the price is driven up.  The price is then driven further upward by the artificial scarcity generated by the non-legality.  On top of that, there is a security racket put into place surrounding the illicit substance (guns and violence associated with it).  The violence surrounding the black markets (which would quickly dry up if they became legal) is most of what drives the drug war (which is $$$$$$).

Money is the motivator -- there is simply too much at stake to make drugs legal all of a sudden.  Maybe gradually, maybe.

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February 19, 2012, 09:48:23 PM
 #4

I'd rather money be spent on awareness campaigns of the dangers of abusing drugs rather than funding a "war" on it.  If people are irresponsible and abuse it and then commit a crime they should be dealt with the same as anyone else committing the same crime.  The crime itself shouldn't be the drugs themselves.  No substance is good or bad inherently, only in the way it is used.  I could eat myself to death with salad, or take arsenic in amounts that wouldn't hurt me at all.

I know plenty of socially responsible and productive people that recreationally use drugs the same way most people use alcohol or coffee.

As usual everybody is punished thanks to people with no self control whom don't want to take responsibility for their own actions.
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February 19, 2012, 10:46:03 PM
 #5

Making drugs illegal causes more harm than drugs do. This is the single most logical reason for legalising them.

Prohibition causes:

Criminal gangs make billions;
Billions lost in tax revenue;
Thousands of deaths through gang shootings;
Some governments are losing control of their territory to armed groups;
Some governments have been corrupted by drug cartels;
Due to lack of regulation, the market tends towards more stronger, more harmful drugs;
Drugs are also tainted due to lack of regulation;
ODs caused by different strength batches of a drug;
Massive cost to the taxpayer to maintain prisons, law enforcement and courts;
Users become marginalised in society and may not seek help should they need it;
Users risk loss of employment if prosecuted...

There's loads more I could add.

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February 19, 2012, 11:12:37 PM
 #6

The laws about drugs are one of the worst possible laws. They drive the business to criminals, which causes death, requires enormous amounts of money to fight and the laws are simply ineffective! THC is legal here in The Netherlands, yet less people smoke THC here than they do in say UK, where it is illegal to do so. And not do these wars on drugs cost tons of money, they are also missing truckloads of money. By legalizing certain drugs, not only would they make tons of money on producing those drugs and taxes paid over those products, they would save tons of money, since the illegal sector will have a hard time competing with the legal one, so it would require less money to fight the illegal sector.

And that's just talking about the criminal things related to drugs. By providing good education about drugs, people would most likely use them instead of abuse them. And they would get quality goods instead of tainted products, which are usually far more dangerous to one's health than the substance the user intended to take. This would save tons of money yet again, because we would save money on health care on drugs related incidents.

And frankly, people don't take their governments serious anymore. People got told for example that 1 XTC pill can kill them. And this is just ridiculous. This would only be possible by mixing it with other substances, or by behavior that could have been prevented by providing proper and honest education. And even then the chances of dieing by taking 1 pill of XTC are far less than dieing by binge drinking alcohol, which plenty of teenagers do these days.

The reason why drugs beyond THC won't be legalized here in The Netherlands in the foreseeable future is politics. Even if experts provide numbers that legalizing will have more benefits than downsides, they won't do it. A politician who would want to do such a thing would simply get a lot less votes. Politicians don't have to do what's best for the country, politicians sadly have to do what the people think it's best for the country, just to get people to vote for them. This is also the biggest flaw with current politics in my opinion. Experts who know far more about certain things, like in this case drugs, can't improve the current conditions simply because ignorant people won't vote for a politician who would want to do such a thing, simply because they are ignorant and think it's bad.

Too bad, sadly Sad

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February 29, 2012, 12:17:09 AM
 #7

All of the posts above contain good reasons behind the legalization of drugs.

So what is the next step? Why are the majority of politicians doing nothing?
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February 29, 2012, 12:35:53 AM
 #8

All of the posts above contain good reasons behind the legalization of drugs.

So what is the next step? Why are the majority of politicians doing nothing?

Haven't you heard? They're all Christians.
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February 29, 2012, 02:11:16 AM
 #9

All of the posts above contain good reasons behind the legalization of drugs.

So what is the next step? Why are the majority of politicians doing nothing?

1) People see how others mess up their lives (become emotional and financial drains on those around them) after starting to "take drugs" and think the government should do something without thinking about the effectiveness of this solution nor the unintended consequences.

2) Suddenly legalizing would piss off a lot of powerful people at once. It is unclear how much connection there is between drug lords, law enforcement, and politicians. Even if there was no corruption here, legalization may result in a violent response from those who's revenue was suddenly cut off.

3) Drug arrests are a source of government revenue.

4) Drug arrests are a good method/excuse to gather intel on organized crime and the populace in general.

5) Drug use can be used as a proxy in estimating the degree to which different groups are law-abiding and willing to adapt their moral code to match the legal code.

6) Drug laws (especially reefer) are one of those divisive issues (like abortion) that the major parties use to mobilize their political base.
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February 29, 2012, 02:17:47 AM
 #10

Laws prohibiting drug use mitigate freedom.

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February 29, 2012, 02:46:26 AM
 #11

Laws prohibiting drug use mitigate freedom.

But Bruno is right; the Christian majority doesn’t care if freedom is compromised. They only care about what’s in their best interest as they see it. Oh, and having sex with little boys they care about that too.

I think the Christian majority, in the same general sense as you refer to them, don't really have many concrete values that they can truly call their own.  I don't think they really know what they value unless its handed to them on a silver platter or at gun point.  I don't think they've taken the time to reason their way to faith or belief.

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February 29, 2012, 02:47:52 AM
 #12

Laws prohibiting drug use mitigate freedom.

But Bruno is right; the Christian majority doesn’t care if freedom is compromised. They only care about what’s in their best interest as they see it. Oh, and having sex with little boys they care about that too.

I think the Christian majority, in the same general sense as you refer to them, don't really have many concrete values that they can truly call their own.  I don't think they really know what they value unless its handed to them on a silver platter or at gun point.  I don't think they've taken the time to reason their way to faith or belief.
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February 29, 2012, 07:16:46 AM
 #13

Drugs should definitely remain illegal.  Personal freedom is not an issue when addiction is a part of the equation.  Once you go down that path, you sacrifice the ability to exercise your free will and the government must step in for your own good.

Not to mention the damage addicted individuals due to society.  They rob whatever they can and hurt the people around them, family and strangers.  Alcohol was not just prohibited in the name of Christianity, it was one of the first moments where women began to flex political power even before they gained the vote, the goal was to stop their drunk husbands from smacking them around.

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February 29, 2012, 07:43:49 AM
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Have you considered the effectiveness of prohibition and the unintended consequences that may arise from this kind of government action?
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February 29, 2012, 07:49:35 AM
 #15

Have you considered the effectiveness of prohibition and the unintended consequences that may arise from this kind of government action?

The main problem is that we are too lenient in our criminal penalties.  If you make them tough enough, you can really reduce drug use.  Take a look Singapore. 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/jun/05/singapore-policy-drugs-bay

Quote
With all these efforts, Singapore has one of the lowest prevalence of drug abuse worldwide, even though it has not been entirely eliminated. Over two decades, the number of drug abusers arrested each year has declined by two-thirds, from over 6,000 in the early 1990s to about 2,000 last year. Fewer than two in 10 abusers released from prison or drug rehabilitation centres relapse within two years. We do not have traffickers pushing drugs openly in the streets, nor do we need to run needle exchange centres. Because of our strict laws, Singapore does not have to contend with major drug syndicates linked to organised crime, unlike some other countries.

The laws might seem harsh, but peddling drugs is equivalent to peddling poison.  It kills people, and laws should reflect that.

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February 29, 2012, 07:55:25 AM
 #16

So shouldn't we start with RJ Reynolds.

Absolutely.  My grandmother died from lung cancer, you won't get an argument from me on that.

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February 29, 2012, 07:56:47 AM
 #17

Drugs should definitely remain illegal.  Personal freedom is not an issue when addiction is a part of the equation.  Once you go down that path, you sacrifice the ability to exercise your free will and the government must step in for your own good.

Not to mention the damage addicted individuals due to society.  They rob whatever they can and hurt the people around them, family and strangers.  Alcohol was not just prohibited in the name of Christianity, it was one of the first moments where women began to flex political power even before they gained the vote, the goal was to stop their drunk husbands from smacking them around.

Please give me a fair list of things you consider addictive and legal at this very moment. Be fair to yourself.

Should there be laws to protect minors? Yes.
Shall you be kept a perpetual minor? No.

Can it be taxed heavily? Yes.

Not to mention the damage addicted inividuals due to society? You mean like power and money addicted politicians?

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February 29, 2012, 08:03:03 AM
 #18

And since i prefer to debate with an educated counterparty:

You mentioned the problem of addiction.

Please name those "drugs" that you know to be illegal and not addictive.
Please tell me your position on these.

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February 29, 2012, 08:15:10 AM
 #19

There are far too many drugs, medical or recreational, for me to provide you with an exhaustive list for the sake of an internet debate.  If you would like to debate the legal status of any particular substance feel free to make your case.

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February 29, 2012, 08:29:29 AM
 #20

There are far too many drugs, medical or recreational, for me to provide you with an exhaustive list for the sake of an internet debate.  If you would like to debate the legal status of any particular substance feel free to make your case.

I know you can do better than that.

Saying something should be illegal because it is addictive should have outlawed human brains.

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