Thursday, July 19, 2007


No, not another post about church conservatives!

Its dope. Today, seven Ministers in the government have said they have smoked dope. No surprise there given their age group.

Personally, I don't do drugs. Other than coffee. And alcohol. So, I don't have an axe to grind here.

My views on the topic are:
1. Classification itself is meaningless. Change it back to a class B, but don't waste police time tracking down users.
2. Its undoubtedly stronger than it used to be. ultimately, though, prohibition doesn't work, and the links between drugs are more down to the dealer contact than anything else
3. Once the drugs are on the streets control is an impossibility
4. 'Wars on drugs' don't work, and simply end up glamourising it more
5. Most drug users grow out of it.
6. Some cannabis users will be badly affected, just like some smokers die and some alcoholics suffer those consequences. I don't think thats enough on its own to prohibit. There's only so much you can do to save people from themselves.

Of the above, 5 is the most relevant - lets stop panicking.
And if we are serious about the question, then its the big boys who need catching and sorting.


Benedict Farrer said...

Personally, although I accept that dope is now stronger than it used to be, I am favour of its total and absolute legalisation. The number of young people who smoke dope in Holland is lower then here and, as you said, making it illegal doesn't work. Hardly anyone refrains from smoking dope just because it is illegal, and they have to go to hard drug pushers to get it, who then encourage them to try more dangerous drugs.

If cannabis were illegal, the lawlessness, immorality and violence that is assoicated with the trade would be greatly reduced because it would be taken out of the hands of criminals. This would also largely prevent the "cutting" of dope with other substances.

There is some evidence that some people develop mental health problems due to it's use, but I would contend that some people use it to try and cope with existing MH problems which scews the evidence. Also, AIUI those who develop MH issues from smoking dope tend to be people who use dope extremely heavily, for many years and who have a genetic predisposition to it anyway. Also, if the government legalised it, they could tax it. And more people die crossing the road every month then die from taking an E every year, and those who die from taking an E or 5 usually do so because of poor information, because the drug has been "cut" or because they are unwilling to go to hospital in case they face arrest, or some other reason directly related to it's legal status.

The real reason that dope is illegal is because of the mindless, knee-jerk hysteria that would result in the Daily Mail and other organs of the ignorant "don't confuse us with the facts" right-wing shit-tanks. They would lose votes, basically, even though legalisation would be the right thing to do.

Benedict Farrer said...
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