Drug Criminalisation: All Cons

Has the “drug war” been a success and should we continue it? You decide…

The pernicious, hidden effects of drug criminalisation:

  • erodes the privacy boundary, thence respect for public space 
  • criminalises pursuit of fun and millions of otherwise law abiding citizens, eroding respect for the law
  • excuses the creation of a police state, wire tapping (87% of 2012 wire taps in USA) and racial profiling
  • criminalises poverty and misery
  • feeds the industrial prison business 
  • promotes moralism as if it were a virtue
  • draws arbitrary distinctions between substances that harms the reputation of the law

 

The obvious effects:

  • increases criminal opportunity for theft, violence and smuggling 
  • sends money to criminal gangs, enabling other more serious crimes
  • reduces access to rehabilitation and education
  • increases corruption
  • destabilises producing countries
  • lost government revenues 
  • increases danger due to lack of quality controls
  • enables the introduction of untested, dangerous new substances

 

And that’s before even mentioning:

  • wastes police and prison resources
  • crowds the judicial system with non-violent, otherwise civil citizens
  • no correlation between amount of resources spent on the ‘drug war’ and the rate of drug use

 

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