Efficiency[ edit ] Drug laws are effective[ edit ] Supporters of prohibition claim that drug laws have a successful track record suppressing illicit drug use since they were introduced years ago. With illicit drug use peaking in the s in the United States, the "Just Say No" campaign, initiated under the patronage of Nancy Reagan, coincided with recent past month illicit drug use decreases from Sweden is an excellent example. Drug use is just a third of the European average while spending on drug control is three times the EU average.
These are external links and will open in a new window Close share panel A look at eye-catching policy ideas that are often talked about but never seem to feature in UK general election campaigns. The background Drug prohibition began in the UK during World War I, when the possession, distribution and sale of cocaine and opium was outlawed.
Cannabis was added to the list inin line with international treaties. For many years, in contrast to the US, the emphasis was on treatment rather than punishment. Heroin was prescribed to addicts on the NHS.
But the climate changed in the s, with the explosion in drug use among young people. The Misuse of Drugs Act, which categorises drugs by their perceived harm, remains the key piece of legislation. As a young Tory MP, David Cameron backed more lenient penalties for the possession of cannabis and ecstasy - and allowing heroin to be prescribed to addicts in "shooting galleries".
He was a member of the Home Affairs Select Committee when it called for an international debate on the legalisation of drugs.
Since entering Number 10, he has changed his view and now supports the current laws, in common with his Labour counterpart. Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg said last year that the "war on drugs" was lost and a review of all options was needed.
The case for legalisation In the world embarked on a US-led act of collective folly when it identified the non-medical use of specific drugs, including cannabis, cocaine and heroin, as a global threat and attempted to rid the world of them using punitive enforcement.
So, why has this war not been ended? Why do politicians continue to support it? The fundamental answer is disturbing. Prohibition clearly does not work for the vast majority of the world's citizens. However, it meets the needs of the world's superpowers, who can resource and engage their military, police and criminal justice systems, all justified in the war against the global "drug menace".
And at the same time it meets the needs of global financial markets who launder the billions in illicit profits. To reorient policy in favour of ordinary people, the simple solution is to explore responsible legal regulation of drugs markets.
It is a position increasingly supported by Latin American presidents and indeed the US, where citizens in Washington State and Colorado recently voted to legally regulate cannabis markets.
Despite his previous support for reform, since coming to power David Cameron has become a drug warrior, whilst [Labour leader] Ed Miliband appears to have deserted the most disadvantaged and marginalised by avoiding the drugs issue completely. However, party leaders will shift if voters across the political spectrum prioritise it at election time.
If not, senior politicians will remain in thrall to the US, and the UK will maintain its fervent support for a policy that serves the needs of the elite at the expense of the vast majority.
The case against legalisation It is easy to be dissatisfied with current drugs policies. Kids report they can get drugs relatively easily, and too many of us have suffered the heartbreak of addiction affecting a loved one or ourselves.
The market for drugs is violent and deadly. In fact, the best evidence we have shows that legalisation would make a bad drug problem much worse - by increasing addiction, normalising use among kids, and relegating its sale to profit-hungry corporations or governments with every incentive to increase addiction to advance their bottom line.
Legalisation is a very sloppy way to address the unintended consequences of current policy. First, we know that legalisation would significantly cheapen the price of cocaine, cannabis, and heroin, making them more accessible and therefore increasing addiction.
Additionally, allowing drugs to be sold on the open market implies we would allow the sale of highly dangerous drugs such as crack and methamphetamine by multinational conglomerates.
Big Tobacco would have nothing on Big Meth. Second, it is unclear that a major attraction of legalisation - the supposed reduction of the violent, underground market - would materialise.
As governments put restrictions like age limits on legal drugs, the illicit economy will be happy to step in to fill the gap. Yes, mass incarceration is a bad thing. And the developing world is being torn apart by the UK's appetite for drugs.
But rather than legalise - which would increase crime and potentially increase incarceration rates - we should invest more in strategies such as drug treatment, specialised drug treatment courts, better drug prevention, smart enforcement, and international partnerships that promote alternative development.
The UK is moving in the right direction.Medical Marijuana - Should Marijuana Be a Medical Option? Euthanasia & Assisted Suicide - Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal? Vaccines for Kids - Should Any Vaccines Be Required for Children?
Milk - Is Drinking Milk Healthy for Humans? Abortion - Should Abortion Be Legal? Vegetarianism - Should People Become Vegetarian? Obesity - Is Obesity a Disease? Stopping marijuana use can lead to withdrawal symptoms like anxiety and irritability.
Over half the million people classified with illicit drug dependence or abuse in the United States are hooked on weed. Three reasons marijuana should remain illegal Now that you understand why legalization might work, let's look at the various reasons the current federal scheduling might make more sense.
1. Arguments about the prohibition of drugs, and over drug policy reform, are subjects of considerable controversy. The following is a presentation of major drug policy arguments, including those for drug law enforcement on one side of the debate, and arguments for drug law reform on the other.
Aug 01, · Voters in at least five states, including California, will be asked whether they want to legalize marijuana for casual use on Election Day. Four . Medical Marijuana - Should Marijuana Be a Medical Option?
Euthanasia & Assisted Suicide - Should Euthanasia or Physician-Assisted Suicide Be Legal? Vaccines for Kids - Should Any Vaccines Be Required for Children? Milk - Is Drinking Milk Healthy for Humans? Abortion - Should Abortion Be Legal? Vegetarianism - Should People Become Vegetarian?
Obesity - Is Obesity a Disease?