Hong Kong (CNN) -- The global war on drugs is failing, new research suggests, as the price of heroin, cocaine and cannabis has fallen while their purity has increased.
Using seven sets of government drug surveillance data, a team of Canadian and U.S. researchers reviewed drug supply in the United States, Europe and Australia and drug production in regions such as Latin America, Afghanistan and Southeast Asia.
They found that illegal drugs have become cheaper while their potency has increased, indicating that efforts to control "the global illegal drug market through law enforcement are failing."
"During the past two decades, the supply of major illegal drugs has increased, as measured through a general decline in the prices and a general increase in the purity of illegal drugs in a variety of settings," said the study, which was published by BMJ Open, an open-access journal published by the British Medical Journal. (full article here)
How about we legalize ALL the problem street drugs. What would happen?
For a while, drugs would become more widely available. Everyone on the verge of selling drugs but staying out due to the potential legal penalties would get into the marketplace. Eventually, though, free market forces would take over and drive the gangsters out of the marketplace.
Getting the gangsters to go home would eliminate lots and lots of crime.
Drugs would become less taboo and the "coolness" factor would diminish. People would feel more free to talk about drugs, removing much of the mystique.
So far, it might appear I'm just removing all the barriers to drug use. Not so because...
I would also legalize discrimination against drug users. I would allow landlords to require drug tests before taking on a tenant and I'd allow them to kick a tenant out before the end of their lease if they fail a surprise drug test. Addicts would have to seek out addiction-friendly landlords and would end up having to live in pretty much all-addict dwellings.
Obviously, I'd allow employers to do drug testing, just like they do now.
Going for a mortgage? Maybe you'll have to pass a drug test. Applying for any sort of government subsidy? You might have to pass a drug test.
And so on...
Got any objections to this approach? or creative suggestions?
Absolutely correct EXCEPT for the matter of addiction. All legislative attempts at controlling the situation have been taken because it was seen that addicts cannot control the situation for themselves - which is, to a large extent, true. Yep, education is the answer but kids need to be given the WHOLE truth. Drugs are FUN! Say that to a classroom full of kids and you will have their immediate and undivided attention. The question is: how can you have fun without becoming an addict. Answer - you pretty much can't.
Before you climb all over that, let me expand the term "addiction".
When my son (now 28) was 14 or so, I said this:
If, on the weekend, you and your friends go out and drink a bunch of beers or smoke some pot, guess what - you're going to have a great time. Then, next weekend, you go to a party but no one can get any beer or pot. It's a PARTY, but it's not nearly as fun as last weekend. Clearly you are not addicted to anything, but you've actually made a HUGE, life-long association - drugs = fun.
Except for the few teetotalers here, would anyone dream of going to a party without a bottle of wine? Hell no. You want to have FUN and fun = drugs.
To this day my son has NEVER ingested any intoxicating substance. As a result of my wee speech, his is resolved that HE will be in control of his life and that he CAN have fun without chemical intervention. He's very popular - he's the designated driver.