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legalize (soft)drugs






Do you want to your goverment to legalize (soft)drug use?
1. Yes please! I am a (soft)drug user myself
18%
 18%  [ 6 ]
2. Yes, I think it will end the war on (soft)drugs
50%
 50%  [ 16 ]
3. No, It will increase usage so, my country will end up in the gutter
28%
 28%  [ 9 ]
4. no, I want my government to decide what is good/bad for me
3%
 3%  [ 1 ]
Total Votes : 32

chico-lama
As most of you probably now, In the Netherlands it is legal to sell softdrugs in coffeeshops. I think this is possible since the '70. Up till now the grow of softdrugs is illegal. It means that coffeeshop holders are allowed to sell, but are forced to buy from criminals. Not the ideal situations if you ask me.

This week a debat is started wheather the government wants to allow a testcase in which the whole procces of growing and selling is allowed. The results will show if this throws back the criminals (and some other results)

Why legalize?
  • No criminals will be involved anymore

  • the semi-legalization in the Netherlands did not show any increase in softdrug (ab)use


and there are a whole lot of other reasons....think about it
nik
not a good idea if someone want' to use drugs he can find it. make is legal will only make more drugs.


by the was by the number of posts about drugs i can see that there is alot of drug users here Laughing
Borse
I figure the best way to kill the drug trade is to Legalize it and then put the government in charge of it. Very Happy actually if we could legalize it then people won't be able to make enough money off of drug sales to make it worth killing people over. We already allow soft drug use if you include alcohol and nicotine. Lets just add a few more.
chico-lama
sharkkky wrote:
Why should I complete such a ridiculous form, it has obviously been worded so as to limit the finingd to that of which you want.


Nobody will force you to complete this form. I am limited with options, but I like to hear some reasons. Maybe the following will help. I will add two options: No, other reasons and Yes, other reasons. If you choose one of these you can add you reasons in a post.

sharkkky wrote:
As to the previous person saying that soft drugs have theraputic properties , Where's your actual evidence of that then. Im sure if there where any that there would not be an issue about the subject. This form of thinking is almost always based on pure opinion and conjecture.


I thought it was prescribed in the Netherlands, Unfortunately I can not find any proof. Maybe I am wrong. I will delete this.
chico-lama
nik wrote:
not a good idea if someone want' to use drugs he can find it. make is legal will only make more drugs.


The facts; consumption of cannabis note:It is legal to buy drugs in the Netherlands. Judge for yourself

Code:

country            age           year    % once used    % recently used
Spain             15-65          2001         25%             10%
France            15-65          2000         23%              8%
Netherlands       15-65          2001         21%              6%
Ierland           15-65        2002/2003      18%              5%
Canada            15 up          2002         41%             12%
VS                12 up          2003         41%             11%
Australia         14 up          2001         33%             13%
Denmark           16-64          2000         31%              6%
UK and Wales      16-59       2002/2003       31%             11%
Italy             15-44          2001         22%              6%
Germany           18-59          2000         19%              6%


sources:

European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (2004). Statistical bulletin 2004. Lisbon: EMCDDA.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) (2002). Results from the 2001 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse: volume I. Summary of national findings. Rockville, MD: DHHS.
hive
Drugs were aways legal, just in the recent centuries we had turned it illegal. And if you dig deep for the true reasons of proihibition you will realise that are others reasons for the prohibitions than it make us harm.

Drugs are with us since the beginning of mankid and I think we have to (re)learn how to live in peace with it.
wingo
In an ideal world, there wouldn't be (soft) drug usage or (soft) drug users. However, this isn't an ideal world, and such impurities exist. It's the same case with homosexuality. So I guess they have to allow it...
darczeku
drugs are still drugs...soft or hard......
Revvion
Well i'm from holland but now we have another problem, it legal for some shops to sell sot drugs but elegal to make them. So now they buy it from many people so that some of the drugs might be dangerous (or what ever you want to call it Question )
cinecorp
By soft drugs I assume we're talking about pot. I don't think that their is any reason why pot is still criminal, seeing as it has no proven serious health repercussions. However if it were to be legalized then it would surely only be sold by the government at a dramatically inflated price.
Ikonoklast
I smoke marijauna and my friend drinks and there is nothing really different about what we are doing. recreation is recreation, yes as with alcohol you can develop a psychologial need for weed :) but it is not like hard drugs where use is all it takes to develop a physiological need.
SunburnedCactus
Ikonoklast wrote:
I smoke marijauna and my friend drinks and there is nothing really different about what we are doing. recreation is recreation, yes as with alcohol you can develop a psychologial need for weed Smile but it is not like hard drugs where use is all it takes to develop a physiological need.


Incorrect. Hard drugs (and alcohol) cause the body to develop a physical dependency, whilst marijuana causes a psychological dependency and leads to schizophrenia etc.
Ikonoklast
Quote:
Incorrect. Hard drugs (and alcohol) cause the body to develop a physical dependency, whilst marijuana causes a psychological dependency and leads to schizophrenia etc.


http://www.anakata.hack.se/papers/pdf/Lancet-352-1611.pdf
Dependence syndrome
Animals develop tolerance to the effects of repeated doses
of THC and studies suggest that cannabinoids may
affect the same reward systems as alcohol, cocaine, and
opioids. Heavy smokers of cannabis also develop
tolerance to its subjective and cardiovascular effects and
some report withdrawal symptoms on the abrupt cessation
of cannabis use.
There is evidence that a cannabis dependence syndrome
occurs with heavy chronic use in individuals who report
problems in controlling their use and who continue to use
the drug despite experiencing adverse personal
consequences. There is some clinical evidence of a
dependence syndrome analogous to that for alcohol. In
the USA, cannabis dependence is among the most
common forms of illicit-drug dependence in the
population. About one in ten (10%) of those who ever use
cannabis become dependent on it at some time during
their 4 or 5 years of heaviest use. This risk is more like
the equivalent risk for alcohol (15%) than for nicotine
(32%) or opioids (23%).

http://www.anakata.hack.se/papers/pdf/Lancet-352-1611.pdf
SunburnedCactus
Yes, that supports what I said.
Ikonoklast
I belive what this is saying is that marijuana can make it worse if it is already there, but it does not cause schizophrenia. The hard evidence one way or another is not there. And my last post stated that marijuana actually has the least possibility of dependance of any of the drugs listed.


http://www.anakata.hack.se/papers/pdf/Lancet-352-1611.pdf
Psychosis
Large doses of THC produce confusion, amnesia,
delusions, hallucinations, anxiety, and agitation. Such
reactions are rare, occurring after unusually heavy
cannabis use; in most cases they remit rapidly after
abstinence from cannabis.
There is an association between cannabis use and
schizophrenia. A prospective study of 50 000 Swedish
conscripts45 found a dose-response relation between the
frequency of cannabis use by age 18 and the risk of a
diagnosis of schizophrenia over the subsequent 15 years. A
plausible explanation is that cannabis use can exacerbate
the symptoms of schizophrenia and there is prospective
evidence that continued use predicts more psychotic
symptoms in people with schizophrenia
. A declining
incidence of treated cases of schizophrenia over the
period when cannabis use has increased suggests,
however, that cannabis use is unlikely to have caused cases
of schizophrenia that would not otherwise have occurred.
This observation suggests that chronic use may precipitate
schizophrenia in vulnerable individuals, an effect that
would not be expected to change incidence.

http://www.anakata.hack.se/papers/pdf/Lancet-352-1611.pdf
SunburnedCactus
Fair point regarding genetic predisposition. You didn't need to paste the whole article again though, did you? Wink
Dorfinger
The only reason for a gouvernement to legalyze soft drug is to tax it .
Ikonoklast
just wanted to make sure of the context :)
benwhite
Legalization process: the low price makes it easy to get drugs. Then government taxes, like on cigarettes, and makes desperately need money. Any moral argument against this is untenable. Smoking is leading preventable cause of death in the world. Alcohol also kills millions yearly. There is little to suggest that legalization increases use and would most likely not increase health causes. People who are going to do it, do it. The few that don't try because it's illegal are the people usually wouldn't end up doing it habitually were it so. I don't smoke, but I can. Why would smoking pot be a revolution to the drug world. It'd just make it make more sense. The amount of money the government spends on the war on marijuana is immense. To contrast, meth labs are springing up everywhere, police everywhere in the country have stated that meth is more a problem then marijuana. But why is it not being stopped---because the money is spend putting pot dealers away from 10 years. Sort of silly when you think about how the government sanctions A and T use.

Quick factoid: Alcohol and Tobacco are regulated by the ATF, not the FDA. But, here's the kicker. Quit-smoking drugs, like the patch and the gum are under the jurisdiction of the FDA. Thus, the industry to quit smoking is more tightly regulated than smoking itself. Odd, no?
Ressurrector
Mmmm whats a "soft" drug? Caffeine , nicotine , weed, what? Confused
VincentBlack
I think people should be allowed to do what they want with they're lives, if they arent mature enough not to abuse drugs then they shouldnt start using them. If they do get addicted there is always rehab, and if they choose 1 to take drugs and 2 not to go into rehab, then thats 100% their fault for anything bad that happens. Btw, I've never done drugs or even gotten drunk before, I never plan to do drugs ever but I'd like to get drunk at least once or twice in my life.
chico-lama
Ressurrector wrote:
Mmmm whats a "soft" drug? Caffeine , nicotine , weed, what? Confused


Ofcourse it`s a hard question. In the Netherlands ('My' country) Caffeine and nicotine are not considerd softdrugs, although it is accepted that these substances couse an "addiction". Weed/hash are considered soft drugs (although it is not that addictive, as the figures above show). There is research that show that it cause brain damage, but only when it is used for years and years and of course used large amounts. This is also the case with cigarets. This is no reason to make it illegal to buy or use (in 'my' country). But that is already clear from my first post.

note: I am NOT a weed/hash/cigaret user myself.[/b]
hrtorrent
Soft drugs are easy road to hard drugs, and hard drugs leads to deadth.

Confused
chico-lama
hrtorrent wrote:
Soft drugs are easy road to hard drugs, and hard drugs leads to deadth.


Hmm are you from this world?

Okay, it hapens sometimes, but its not a rule. If someone wants to try harddrugs, he will find it. No matter its legal or illegal.. But believe me far most of the softdrugs users, will never try harddrugs.
wowz
I think they should be legalized. It's true, if they were legal, people would use them less. Because they can, so they don't want to.

Why do kids to drugs? Mainly to rebel. If it's legal, why would they?

Also, medicinally, majuana is a great drug for treatment of many many things. There's a HUGE list of things it helps treat. Doctors and scientists in Canada are currently working on finding a way to extract the active ingrediants in majuana so that we can use them for said medicinal purposes. Because smoking is still bad for you, lol
leonk
making soft drugs legal is a great idea
horseatingweeds
cinecorp
Quote:
By soft drugs I assume we're talking about pot. I don't think that their is any reason why pot is still criminal, seeing as it has no proven serious health repercussions.

[url]
http://www.marijuana-addiction.net/marijuana-side-effects.htm[/url]
Quote:
Marijuana side effects also wreak havoc on the brain when the drug is used habitually. The natural chemical balance of the brain is disrupted affecting the pleasure centers and regulatory systems. The ability to learn, remember and adapt quickly to changes is impaired by marijuana use. Depression often occurs with marijuana usage, which feeds into the cycle of more drug use to treat the pain created by drug use. This cycle of addiction is very powerful and users soon find that they cannot stop using the drug even if they want to.


My idea would be to legalize growing marijuana, and not selling or importing it. That way if you really want it bad enough you can get it legally. This would also give many of the benefits all ready mentioned. It would also be a lot safer. From what I have herd people that grow it spray crap on it and people that sell it will some times add crap to it.

Anyway, it would be a great project for the elderly. That’s what I’m thinking. If your on your last limb, are loosing your mind anyway, and like gardening, why the hell not burn one down at 4:00pm after dinner.
pjv
Drugs are good if put to proper use. Drug abuse is prohibited and the government should do all what they can to prevent misuse of this stuff.

SAY NO TO DRUGS!
chico-lama
pjv wrote:
Drug abuse is prohibited and the government should do all what they can to prevent misuse of this stuff. SAY NO TO DRUGS!


Why should the government prevent misuse? I can say no to drugs without my government prohibiting it.
hive
The following is reprinted from The Pragmatist, August 1988. Some of the
examples and data are dated, but the arguments are still valid.(rbs)


TWELVE REASONS TO LEGALIZE DRUGS


There are no panaceas in the world but, for social afflictions, legalizing
drugs comes possibly as close as any single policy could. Removing legal
penalties from the production, sale and use of "controlled substances"
would alleviate at least a dozen of our biggest social or political
problems.

With proposals for legalization finally in the public eye, there might
be a use for some sort of catalog listing the benefits of legalization.
For advocates, it is an inventory of facts and arguments. For opponents,
it is a record of the problems they might be helping to perpetuate.

The list is intended both as a resource for those wishing to participate in
the legalization debate and as a starting point for those wishing to get
deeper into it.

Are we ready to stop wringing our hands and start solving problems?

1. Legalizing drugs would make our streets and homes safer.

As Jeffrey Rogers Hummel notes ("Heroin: The Shocking Story," April 1988),
estimates vary widely for the proportion of violent and property crime
related to drugs. Forty percent is a midpoint figure. In an October 1987
survey by Wharton Econometrics for the U.S. Customs Service, the 739 police
chiefs responding "blamed drugs for a fifth of the murders and rapes, a
quarter car thefts, two-fifths of robberies and assaults and half the
nation's burglaries and thefts."

The theoretical and statistical links between drugs and crime are well
established. In a 2 1/2-year study of Detroit crime, Lester P. Silverman,
former associate director of the National Academy of Sciences' Assembly of
Behavior and Social Sciences, found that a 10 percent increase in the price
of heroin alone "produced an increase of 3.1 percent total property crimes
in poor nonwhite neighborhoods." Armed robbery jumped 6.4 percent and
simple assault by 5.6 percent throughout the city.

The reasons are not difficult to understand. When law enforcement
restricts the supply of drugs, the price of drugs rises. In 1984, a
kilogram of cocaine worth $4000 in Colombia sold at wholesale for $30,000,
and at retail in the United States for some $300,000. At the time a Drug
Enforcement Administration spokesman noted, matter-of-factly, that the
wholesale price doubled in six months "due to crackdowns on producers and
smugglers in Columbia and the U.S." There are no statistics indicating the
additional number of people killed or mugged thanks to the DEA's crackdown
on cocaine.

For heroin the factory-to-retail price differential is even greater.
According to U.S. News & World report, in 1985 a gram of pure heroin in
Pakistan cost $5.07, but it sold for $2425 on the street in America--nearly
a five-hundredfold jump.

The unhappy consequence is that crime also rises, for at least four
reasons:
* Addicts must shell out hundreds of times the cost of goods, so they
often must turn to crime to finance their habits. The higher the price
goes, the more they need to steal to buy the same amount.
* At the same time, those who deal or purchase the stuff find themselves
carrying extremely valuable goods, and become attractive targets for
assault.
* Police officers and others suspected of being informants for law
enforcement quickly become targets for reprisals.
* The streets become literally a battleground for "turf" among competing
dealers, as control over a particular block or intersection can net
thousands of additional drug dollars per day.

Conversely, if and when drugs are legalized, their price will collapse
and so will the sundry drug-related motivations to commit crime. Consumers
will no longer need to steal to support their habits. A packet of cocaine
will be as tempting to grab from its owner as a pack of cigarettes is
today. And drug dealers will be pushed out of the retail market by known
retailers. When was the last time we saw employees of Rite Aid pharmacies
shoot it out with Thrift Drugs for a corner storefront?

When drugs become legal, we will be able to sleep in our homes and walk
the streets more safely. As one letter-writer to the Philadelphia Inquirer
put it, "law-abiding citizens will be able to enjoy not living in fear of
assault and burglary."


2. It would put an end to prison overcrowding.

Prison overcrowding is a serious and persistent problem. It makes the
prison environment, violent and faceless to begin with, even more dangerous
and dehumanizing.

According to the 1988 Statistical Abstract of the United States, between
1979 and 1985 the number of people in federal and state prisons and local
jails grew by 57.8 percent, nine time faster than the general population.

Governments at all levels keep building more prisons, but the number of
prisoners keeps outpacing the capacity to hold them. According to the
Federal Bureau of Prisons' 1985 Statistical Report, as of September 30 of
that year federal institutions held 35,959 prisoners-41 percent over the
rated prison capacity of 25,638. State prisons were 114 percent of
capacity in 1986.

Of 31,346 sentenced prisoners in federal institutions, those in for drug
law violations were the largest single category, 9487. (A total of 4613
were in prison but not yet sentenced under various charges.)

Legalizing drugs would immediately relieve the pressure on the prison
system, since there would no longer be "drug offenders" to incarcerate.
And, since many drug users would no longer need to commit violent or
property crime to pay for their habits, there would be fewer "real"
criminals to house in the first place. Instead of building more prisons, we
could pocket the money and still be safer.

Removing the 9487 drug inmates would leave 26,472. Of those, 7200 were
in for assault, burglary, larceny-theft, or robbery. If the proportion of
such crimes that is related to drugs is 40 percent, without drug laws
another 2900 persons would never have made it to federal prison. The
inmates who remained would be left in a less cruel, degrading environment.
If we repealed the drug laws, we could eventually bring the prison
population down comfortably below the prison's rated capacity.


3. Drug legalization would free up police resources to fight crimes
against people and property.

The considerable police efforts now expended against drug activity and
drug-related crime could be redirected toward protecting innocent people
from those who would still commit crime in the absence of drug laws. The
police could protect us more effectively, as it could focus resources on
catching rapists, murderers and the remaining perpetrators of crimes
against people and property.

4. It would unclog the court system.

If you are accused of a crime, it takes months to bring you to trial.
Guilty or innocent, you must live with the anxiety of impending trial until
the trial finally begins. The process is even more sluggish for civil
proceedings.

There simply aren't enough judges to handle the skyrocketing caseload.
Because it would cut crime and eliminate drugs as a type of crime,
legislation would wipe tens of thousands of cases off the court dockets
across the continent, permitting the rest to move sooner and faster.
Prosecutors would have more time to handle each case; judges could make
more considered opinions.

Improved efficiency at the lower levels would have a ripple effect on
higher courts. Better decisions in the lower courts would yield fewer
grounds for appeals, reduing the caseloads of appeals courts; and in any
event there would be fewer cases to review in the first place.


5. It would reduce official corruption.

Drug-related police corruption takes one of two major forms. Police
officers can offer drug dealers protection in their districts for a share
of the profits (or demand a share under threat of exposure). Or they can
seize dealer's merchandise for sale themselves.

Seven current or former Philadelphia police officers were indicted May
31 on charges of falsifying records of money and drugs confiscated from
dealers. During a house search, one man turned over $20,000 he had made
from marijuana sales, but the officers gave him a "receipt" for $1870.
Another dealer, reports The Inquirer, "told the grand jury he was charged
with possession of five pounds of marijuana, although 11 pounds were found
in his house."

In Miami, 59 officers have been fired or suspended since 1985 for
suspicion of wrongdoing. The police chief and investigators expect the
number eventually to approach 100. As The Palm Beach Post reported, "That
would mean about one in 100 officers on the thousand man force will have
been tainted by one form of scandal or another."

Most of the 59 have been accused of trafficking, possessing or using
illegal drugs. In the biggest single case, 17 officers allegedly
participated in a ring that stole $15 million worth of cocaine from dealers
"and even traffic violators."

What distinguishes the Miami scandal is that "Police are alleged to be
drug traffickers themselves, not just protectors of criminals who are
engaged in illegal activities," said The post. According to James Frye, a
criminologist at American University in Washington, the gravity of the
situation in Miami today is comparable to Prohibition-era Chicago in the
1920s and '30s.

It is apt comparison. And the problem is not limited to Miami and
Philadelphia. The astronomical profits from the illegal drug trade are a
powerful incentive on the part of law enforcement agents to partake from
the proceeds.

Legalizing the drug trade outright would eliminate this inducement to
corruption and help to clean up the police's image. Eliminating
drug-related corruption cases would further reduce the strain on the
courts, freeing judges and investigators to handle other cases more
thoroughly and expeditiously.


6. Legalization would save tax money.

Efforts to interdict the drug traffic alone cost $6.2 billion in 1986,
according to Wharton Econometrics of Bala Cynwyd, Pa. If we ad the cost of
trying and incarcerating users, traffickers, and those who commit crime to
pay for their drugs, the tab runs well above $10 billion.

The crisis in inmate housing would disappear, saving taxpayers the
expense of building more prisons in the future.

As we've noted above, savings would be redirected toward better police
protection and speedier judicial service. Or it could be converted into
savings for taxpayers. Or the federal portion of the costs could be
applied toward the budget deficit. For a change, it's a happy problem to
ponder. But it takes legalization to make it possible.


7. It would cripple organized crime.

The Mafia (heroin), Jamaican gangs (crack), and the Medellin Cartel
(cocaine) stand to lose billions in drug profits from legalization. On a
per-capita basis, members of organized crime, particularly at the top,
stand to lose the most from legalizing the drug trade.

The underworld became big business in the United States when alcohol was
prohibited. Few others would risk setting up the distribution networks,
bribing officials or having to shoot up a policeman or competitor once in a
while. When alcohol was re-legalized, reputable manufacturers took over.
The risk and the high profits went out of the alcohol trade. Even if they
wanted to keep control over it, the gangsters could not have targeted every
manufacturer and every beer store.

The profits from illegal alcohol were minuscule compared to the yield
from today's illegal drugs. They are the underworld's last great,
greatest, source of illegal income--dwarfing anything to be made
fromgambling, prostitution or other vice.

Legalizing drugs would knock out this huge prop from under organized
crime. Smugglers and pushers would have to go aboveboard or go out of
business. There simply wouldn't be enough other criminal endeavors to
employ them all.

If we are concerned about the influence of organized crime on
government, industry and our own personal safety, we could strike no single
more damaging blow against today's gangsters than to legalize drugs.


8. Legal drugs would be safer. Legalization is a consumer protection
issue.

Because it is illegal, the drug trade today lacks many of the consumer
safety features common to other markets: instruction sheets, warning
labels, product quality control, manufacturer accountability. Driving it
underground makes any product, including drugs, more dangerous than it
needs to be.

Nobody denies that currently illegal drugs can be dangerous. But so can
aspirin, countless other over-the-counter drugs and common household items;
yet the proven hazards of matches, modeling glue and lawn mowers are not
used as reasons to make them all illegal.

Practically anything can kill if used in certain ways. Like heroin,
salt can make you sick or dead if you take enough of it. The point is to
learn what the threshold is, and to keep below it. That many things can
kill is not a reason to prohibit them all--it is a reason to find out how
to handle products to provide the desired action safely. The same goes for
drugs.

Today's drug consumer literally doesn't know what he's buying. The
stuff is so valuable that sellers have an incentive to "cut" (dilute) the
product with foreign substances that look like the real thing. Most street
heroin is only 3 to 6 percent pure; street cocaine, 10 to 15 percent.

Since purity varies greatly, consumers can never be really sure how much
to take to produce the desired effects. If you're used to 3 percent heroin
and take a 5 percent dose, suddenly you've nearly doubled your intake.

Manufacturers offering drugs on the open market would face different
incentives than pushers. They rely on name-brand recognition to build
market share, and on customer loyalty to maintain it. There would be a
powerful incentive to provide a product of uniform quality: killing
customers or losing them to competitors is not a proven way to success.
Today, dealers can make so much off a single sale that the incentive to
cultivate a clientele is weak. In fact, police persecution makes it
imperative to move on, damn the customers.

Pushers don't provide labels or instructions, let alone mailing
addresses. The illegal nature of the business makes such things
unnecessary or dangerous to the enterprise. After legalization,
pharmaceutical companies could safely try to win each other's customers--or
guard against liability suits--with better information and more reliable
products.

Even pure heroin on the open market would be safer than today's impure
drugs. As long as customers know what they're getting and what it does,
they can adjust their dosages to obtain the intended effect safely.

Information is the best protection against the potential hazards of
drugs or any other product. Legalizing drugs would promote consumer health
and safety.


9. Legalization would help stem the spread of AIDS and other diseases.

As D.R. Blackmon notes ("Moral Deaths," June 1988), drug prohibition
has helped propagate AIDS among intravenous drug users.

Because IV drug users utilize hypodermic needles to inject heroin and
other narcotics, access to needles is restricted. The dearth of needles
leads users to share them. If one IV user has infected blood and some
enters the needle as it is pulled out, the next user may shoot the
infectious agent directly into his own bloodstream.

Before the AIDS epidemic, this process was already known to spread other
diseases, principally hepatitis B. Legalizing drugs would eliminate the
motivation to restrict the sale of hypodermic needles. With needles cheap
and freely available, the drug users would have little need to share them
and risk acquiring someone else's virus.

Despite the pain and mess involved, injection became popular because, as
The Washington Times put it, "that's the way to get the biggest, longest
high for the money." Inexpensive, legal heroin, on the other hand, would
enable customers to get the same effect (using a greater amount) from more
hygienic methods such as smoking or swallowing--cutting further into the
use of needles and further slowing the spread of AIDS.


10. Legalization would halt the erosion of other personal liberties.

Hundreds of governments and corporations have used the alleged costs
of drugs to begin testing their employees for drugs. Pennsylvania Rep.
Robert Walker has embarked on a crusade to withhold the federal money
carrot from any company or agency that doesn't guarantee a "drug-free
workplace."

The federal government has pressured foreign countries to grant access
to bank records so it can check for "laundered" drug money. Because drug
dealers handle lots of cash, domestic banks are now required to report cash
deposits over $10,000 to the Internal Revenue Service for evidence of
illicit profit.

The concerns (excesses?) that led to all of these would disappear ipso
facto with drg legalization. Before drugs became big business, investors
could put their money in secure banks abroad without fear of harassment.
Mom-and-pop stores could deposit their cash receipts unafraid that they
might look like criminals.

Nobody makes a test for urine levels of sugar or caffeine a requirement
for employment or grounds for dismissal. However, were they declared
illegal these would certainly become a lot riskier to use, and hence a
possible target for testing "for the sake of our employees." Legalizing
today's illegal drugs would make them safer, deflating the drive to test
for drug use.


11. It would stabilize foreign countries and make them safer to live in
and travel to.

The connection between drug traffickers and and guerrilla groups is
fairly well documented (see "One More Reason," August 1987). South
American revolutionaries have developed a symbiotic relationship with with
coca growers and smugglers: the guerrillas protect the growers and
smugglers in echange for cash to finance their subversive activities. in
Peru, competing guerrilla groups, the Shining Path and the Tupac Amaru,
fight for the lucrative right to represent coca farmers before drug
traffickers.

Traffickers themselves are well prepared to defend their crops against
intruding government forces. A Peruvian military helicopter was destroyed
with bazooka fire in March, 1987, and 23 police officers were killed. The
following June, drug dealers attacked a camp of national guardsmen in
Venezuela, killing 13.

In Colombia, scores of police officers, more than 20 judges, two
newspaper editors, the attorney general and the justice minister have been
killed in that country's war against cocaine traffickers. Two supreme
court justices, including the court president, have resigned following
death threats. The Palace of Justice was sacked in 1985 as guerrillas
destroyed the records of dozens of drug dealers.

"This looks like Beirut," said the mayor of Medellin, Colombia, after a
bomb ripped apart a city block where the reputed head of the Medellin
Cartel lives. It "is a waning of where the madness of the violence that
afflicts us can bring us."

Legalizing the international drug trade would affect organized crime and
subversion abroad much as it would in the United States. A major source
for guerrilla funding would disappear. So would the motive for kidnapping
or assassinating officials and private individuals. As in the United
States, ordinary Colombians and Peruvians once again could walk the streets
and travel the roads without fear of drug-related violence. Countries
would no longer be paralyzed by smugglers.


12. Legalization would repair U.S. relations with other countries and
curtail anti-American sentiment around the world.

a. When Honduran authorities spirited away alleged drug lord Juan Matta
Ballesteros and had him extradited to the United States in April, Hondurans
rioted in the streets and demonstrated for days at the U.S. embassy in
Tegucigulpa.

The action violated Honduras's constitution, which prohibits
extradition. Regardless of what Matta may have done, many Hondurans viewed
the episode as a flagrant violation of their little country's laws, just to
satisfy the wishes of the colossus up North.

b. When the U.S. government, in July 1986, sent Army troops and
helicopters to raid cocaine factories in Bolivia, Bolivians were outraged.
The constitution "has been trampled," said the president of Bolivia's House
of Representatives. The country's constitution requires congressional
approval for any foreign military presence.

c. One thousand coca growers marched through the capital, La Paz,
chanting "Death to the United States" and "Up with Coca" last May in
protest over a U.S.-sponsored bill to prohibit most coca production. In
late June, 5000 angry farmers overran a U.S. Drug Enforcement
Administration jungle base, demanding the 40 American soldiers and drug
agents there leave immediately.

U.S. pressure on foreign governments to fight their domestic drug
industries has clearly reinforced the image of America as an imperialist
bully, blithely indifferent to the concerns of other peoples. To Bolivian
coca farmers, the U.S. government is not a beacon of freedom, but a threat
to their livelihoods. To many Hondurans it seems that their government
will ignore its own constitution on request from Uncle Sam. Leftists
exploit such episodes to fan nationalistic sentiment to promote their
agendas.

Legalizing the drug trade would remove some of the reasons to hate
America and deprive local politicians of the chance to exploit them. The
U.S. would have a new opportunity to repair its reputation in an atmosphere
of mutual respect.


source: http://www.erowid.org/psychoactives/policy/policy_writing1.shtml
SgtGarcia
I'm from holland and i work at a burger king near a so called coffeeshop. I don't feel safe when i have to cycle home at night. You can't tell what some people will do when they are influenced by drugs. In my opinion drugs should not be legalized, just to keep places safe for non-drugs using people
Dread Lord Chaos
"Soft" drugs such as marijuana should not be legailzed simply because they have gotten an increasingly larger following. And as for the government regulating it and charging highly inflated prices, their will STILL BE illegal activity as foreign countries will import drugs illegally and MUCH cheaper.
rwojick
There is an inherent problem with ALL drug use.

Once you take a drug you alter your course, some more so than others. If you choose the drug yourself then that gives you some measure of responsibilty, however, if someone else gives you the drug then the possibilty exists that you will pay the mental price while he or she takes in t he money.

Drug trafficers seldom take responsibility, that is what makes them such a seedy lot.

Do I think soft drugs, and by this I think you mean marijuanna, should be legalized? I do. But I also think legalized drugs like you get from the "doctor" should be scrutized to a greater degree, as in the US bureau boys are little better at narcotics than the are with weapons of mass destruction.

Each of us must take responsibilty for what we take into our bodies.
tbsly
If the US government really wanted to win the war on drugs they would legalize marijuana and tax and sell it just the same as alcohol and cigarettes. In the grand scheme of things, pot, cigaretts, and alcohol are all just as bad for you, and they all are used for somewhat the same reasons. They are all just a means to an end.
The government would be making billions of additional dolars in revenue and the people would be happy. Jails wouldn't be filling up with one time offenders, who either have pot on them, are smoking pot, or selling pot. Jails should be reserved for rapists and murders, not pot heads who participate in a victimless crime.
April_May
A drug is a drug. We call them drugs because they affect the self concience and body while creating addictions. For example. Caffein, im addicted to, Nocotine, myfriends are addicted to, alco, my cousin is addicted to, weed (pot) alot of people are addicted to. Every drug causes dependancy. And with every drug, over use will cause death. Even caffein because it can eat away the stomach. If you mean pot as a soft drug as apposed speed, well there are chemicles and pesticides in pot and it creats psychological problems. When it is legalized, more people will get addicted.
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