Legalize All Drugs And End the drug war Uhv Kush Byb EL

See YouTube PlLayLisT: End The Drug War: Legalize ALL PsychoTropic RecreaTional Drugz


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RecreaTional Drug Owners ConsTiTuTional RighTs

RecreaTional Drug Owners ConsTiTuTional RighTs Uhv Legalize All Drugs And End the drug war

BaeesT On: EarTh CiTizen RighTs Uhv Thuh Earth ConsTiTuTion

Eech ( NaTional And Municipal And Local ) Law Code Should GeT { ChekT And If Nehsehsehree FixT } So ThaT In Ehvree Jrisdikshuhn Uhv Thuh RTh Thuh Law Code Ther { ReespekTs Eech Uhv Thuh Following ConsTiTTpooshuhnul RyTs Uhv Eech Recreational Drug Ownr } And { Maeeks It Illegal For Kops Tu AkT AgainsT Ehnee RecreaTional Drug Ownr Tu Koz ThaT Prsuhn Tu BeKum A VicTim Uhv Ehnee Uhv Thuh Following ViolaTion Krymz } }.

1: Eech Recreational Drug Ownr Haz Thuh ConsTiTuTional RyT Tu "Prohibition against physical or psychological duress or torture during any period of investigation, arrest, detention or imprisonment, and against cruel or unusual punishment."

2: Kuz Uhv ThaT, Eech Cop ShouLd Nevr KuhmiT a ( physical durress ohr cruel ) assulT krym violation againsT Ehnee RecreaTional Drug ( Ownr And|Ohr Eewzr ).

3: Recreational Drug Ownrz Hav Thuh ConsTiTuTional RyT Tu "Safety of person from arbitrary or unreasonable arrest, detention, exile, search or seizure; requirement of warrants for searches and arrests."

4: Kuz Uhv ThaT, Eech Cop ShouLd Nevr KuhmiT ThefT Violation UhgensT Ehnee RecreaTional Drug Ownr Without A WarrrenT Uhledjeeng That Thuh RecreaTional Drug Ownr Had { { STole ( Sum Ohr AhL ) Uhv Thuh RecreaTional Drug(z) They Hav } And|Ohr { Endaeendjrd Ohr Violated Anyone's Bod WiTh Their RecreaTional Drug Property } }.

5: AhLsoh Kuz Uhv 3, If Ther'z No WarrenT Legalizing Thuh arresT Then ThaT Iz A ConsTiTuTionally ( rong and illegal ) arresT that MyT Also ProbbabLee InkLood unNehsehsehree And ConsTiTuTionally ( rong and illegal ) { imprisonment uhv wrists in handcuffs Then Cop Car imprisonment And jail Imprisonment } violations AgainsT Thuh RyTs Uhv A RecreaTional Drug Ownr ( InnuhsenT = NoT gilTee ) Uhv Ehnee Uhv THuh Following Real True violation krymz.

6: If Ehnee RecreaTional Drug Ownr Iz InnuhsenT Uhv ( ( Thuh Real True violation krym Uhv UhsuLT ) And ( Real True ProprTee violation krym, Fohr EgzampuL ( ThefT Ohr ( Vandalism Such Az UnauThorized Damaging Uhv A Dif Prsuhn'z ProprTee ) ), Then Tu arresT ThaT Prsuhn WouLd Bee TrooLee ReaLLee ( rong and unJusT ). Thuh rongful arresT MyT Hav Ben Dun Kuz Uhv At LeesT Wun ( Rong And unJusT ) Law ThaT ShouLd MohsT LykLee GeT Chaeendjd Ohr { Reemoovd Fruhm Thuh Lahz Uhv At LeesT ThaT Jrisdikshuhn And Hohpfully Ehnee UhThr Jrisdikshuhn ThaT Haz ( ThaT Ohr A SimmiLr ) ProbbabLee ( Rong And unJusT ) Law }.

Legalize All Drugs And End the drug war


Legalize All Drugs

Thuh NeksT TekST Wuhz Fruhm:

10 Reasons to Legalize All Drugs

By Anthony Martinelli

rThe war on drugs has been an unequivocal failure. Although many people are hesitant when it comes to the idea of legalizing all drugs – which is understandable given the extreme dangers of certain substances – it’s truly the only solution to ending the pain, death and social regression that comes with the drug war.

Below are what we here at TheJointBlog believe to be ten of the most important reasons for why we should legalize all illegal substances, not just cannabis.

1: The war on drugs, and the black market it creates, has led to a pandemic of violence and death, and only legalization will solve the problem.

The existence of drug cartels, and the thousands of lives they’ve taken, is caused directly by the war on drugs, and the fact that drugs are illegal. Without the illegal drug market, these cartels wouldn’t exist, or at the very least their power and influence would be greatly diminished.

With an end to our war on drugs comes an end to a lot of organized violence, and many unnecessary deaths.

2: The war on drugs has has been an economic disaster, funded by taxpayers.

Well over a trillion dollars of taxpayers’ money has gone into fighting a war that the government can never win. A hardline, oftentimes barbaric approach to drug use has not diminished their presence in our society. Instead, prohibition has enriched the criminals who choose to sell illegal drugs, and has done absolutely nothing to decrease usage rates. In a faltering economy, with a huge deficit to account for, the money spent on this ridiculous war cannot be justified.

3: The war on drugs creates an entire class of nonviolent [ Prisoners who are TOO OFT NOT real criminals violating OTHER People].

Drug prohibition has resulted in a mass population of nonviolent citizens being thrown in prison and labeled as lifelong criminals. When someone receives drug felony – which can occurs when even a minuscule amount of an illegal substance is in someone’s possession – it permanently alters their life. Student loans and grants become hard or even impossible to get, as do jobs and many housing opportunities. In many instances drug felons must resort to a life of crime simply to get by, because there are so few options available to them.

Roughly 50% of all inmates in federal prison were sentenced for nonviolent drug-related offenses. Putting these people behind bars alongside violent criminals is inhumane, and often leads to offenders becoming permanently hardened and de-socialized.

4: Legalizing drugs will take away the fear addicts have of seeking help, resulting in decreased addiction rates.

With the war on drugs, those who are seriously addicted to hard drugs often have no means of receiving the help they need to break the addiction and move on with their lives. Addicts fear that if they seek help, they could be persecuted and/or prosecuted for their illegal drug use.

In Portugal, which has decriminalized the possession of all drugs, drug usage rates have declined significantly, especially among minors. There’s also been a large decrease in addiction rates, due to addicts being more likely to seek help as they no longer fearing arrest.

In Portugal, decriminalizing drug possession has also reduced overdoses and STDs.

5: The war on drugs has perpetuated institutional racism.

It’s an undeniable fact that the war on drugs disproportionately effects minorities . For example, reports show that black-Americans are 2.5 times more likely to be arrested for cannabis, and 8 times more likely to be jailed for a drug offense, compared to someone who’s white. This is despite the fact that statistically minorities and whites use drugs at the same rate.

This discrepancy, of course, doesn’t come as a surprise when federal DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) agents are being told not to enforce drug laws in “white areas”.

If we end the war on drugs, we remove a legal tool for racist law enforcement officers and judges to use against minorities.

6: Legal drugs would be safer than black-market drugs, saving lives and reducing healthcare costs.

If drugs were legal, they would be regulated, meaning that warning labels could be mandated, the product could be quality controlled and instructions for the safest way to ingest the drug could be included. This would result in a large decrease in drug deaths/emergency room visits that are caused by street drugs being cut with other substances, or caused by users ingesting the drug the wrong way.

7: Legalizing drugs would free up police time and resources, and would unclog the court system.

If drugs were legal, it would stop police from wasting massive amounts of time and resources perpetuating the drug war. This would allow them to focus on serious crimes that actually reduce public safety, such as homicides and theft. This would also free up the court system.

8: Legalizing drugs would help prevent prison overcrowding.

The United States possesses just 5% of the world’s population, yet harbors over 25% of the world’s prisoners. The failed war on drugs- which as we mentioned above, accounts for roughly 50% of all federal inmates – is primarily to blame for this. If drugs were legalized, prisons would be freed up, allowing room for those who commit serious crimes. This would also help prevent serious criminals from being released early due to a lack of prison space.

9: The war on drugs develops mistrust in our government and our legal system.

Rather than properly educating the public on the dangers of drug use, and helping rehabilitate those who may be addicted, we label all drugs as being demonic entities and throw users in prison. Not only does this build mistrust in our legal system, it also breeds fear and hatred.

In addition to mistreating our citizens, our war on drugs leads to largely skewed priorities. Since Nixon declared this war in 1971, substances like cannabis have been labeled and treated the same as fatal substances such as meth and PCP. In our education system (yes, we’re looking at you, DARE), kids are taught that cannabis is equal in danger to substances like heroin. When kids find out this isn’t true about cannabis, likely through personal use, what’s to stop them from thinking they’ve also been lied to about other drugs? Education is key, and propaganda is dangerous.

We need to continue our work toward a fair and equal justice system. In such a system, there would be no room for failures like the war on drugs, and people would have the ability to choose what they put in their body without the fear of imprisonment.

10: Personal Freedom.

Jailing people for the use and possession of drugs, often for years or decades, flies contrary to the idea that we’re are and should be a free people. We are fully aware that hard drugs can have a devastating effect on the lives of many, but clearly a line has been crossed when simply possessing an illegal drug can have a harsher criminal sentence than crimes such as manslaughter, and can carry with it a life sentence…

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Anthony Martinelli


End The Drug War

Thŭ Nĕkst Tĕkst Wŭz Frŭm:

Let's Be Blunt: It's Time to End the Drug War

Art Carden
Contributor

April 20 is the counter-culture "holiday" on which lots and lots of people come together to advocate marijuana legalization (or just get high). Should drugs—especially marijuana—be legal? The answer is “yes.” Immediately. Without hesitation. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200 seized in a civil asset forfeiture. The war on drugs has been a dismal failure. It’s high time to end prohibition. Even if you aren’t willing to go whole-hog and legalize all drugs, at the very least we should legalize marijuana.

For the sake of the argument, let’s go ahead and assume that everything you’ve heard about the dangers of drugs is completely true. That probably means that using drugs is a terrible idea. It doesn’t mean, however, that the drug war is a good idea.

Prohibition is a textbook example of a policy with negative unintended consequences. Literally: it’s an example in the textbook I use in my introductory economics classes (Cowen and Tabarrok, Modern Principles of Economics if you’re curious) and in the most popular introductory economics textbook in the world (by N. Gregory Mankiw).The demand curve for drugs is extremely inelastic, meaning that people don’t change their drug consumption very much in response to changes in prices. Therefore, vigorous enforcement means higher prices and higher revenues for drug dealers. In fact, I’ll defer to Cowen and Tabarrok—page 60 of the first edition, if you’re still curious—for a discussion of the basic economic logic:

"The more effective prohibition is at raising costs, the greater are drug industry revenues. So, more effective prohibition means that drug sellers have more money to buy guns, pay bribes, fund the dealers, and even research and develop new technologies in drug delivery (like crack cocaine). It’s hard to beat an enemy that gets stronger the more you strike against him or her."

People associate the drug trade with crime and violence; indeed, the newspapers occasionally feature stories about drug kingpins doing horrifying things to underlings and competitors. These aren’t caused by the drugs themselves but from the fact that they are illegal (which means the market is underground) and addictive (which means demanders aren’t very price sensitive).

Those same newspapers will also occasionally feature articles about how this or that major dealer has been taken down or about how this or that quantity of drugs was taken off the streets. Apparently we’re to take from this the idea that we’re going to “win” the war on drugs. Apparently. It’s alleged that this is only a step toward getting “Mister Big,” but even if the government gets “Mister Big,” it’s not going to matter. Apple didn’t disappear after Steve Jobs died. Getting “Mr. Big” won’t win the drug war. As I pointed out almost a year ago, economist and drug policy expert Jeffrey Miron estimates that we would have a lot less violence without a war on drugs.

At the recent Association of Private Enterprise Education conference, David Henderson from the Naval Postgraduate School pointed out the myriad ways in which government promises to make us safer in fact imperil our safety and security. The drug war is an obvious example: in the name of making us safer and protecting us from drugs, we are actually put in greater danger. Without meaning to, the drug warriors have turned American cities into war zones and eroded the very freedoms we hold dear.

Freedom of contract has been abridged in the name of keeping us “safe” from drugs. Private property is less secure because it can be seized if it is implicated in a drug crime (this also flushes the doctrine of “innocent until proven guilty” out the window). The drug war has been used as a pretext for clamping down on immigration. Not surprisingly, the drug war has turned some of our neighborhoods into war zones. We are warehousing productive young people in prisons at an alarming rate all in the name of a war that cannot be won.

Albert Einstein is reported to have said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. By this definition, the drug war is insane. We are no safer, and we are certainly less free because of concerted efforts to wage war on drugs. It’s time to stop the insanity and end prohibition.


Legalize MeThampheTamine

Legalize MeThampheTamine

Thuh NeksT TekST Wuhz Fruhm:

Legalize Methamphetamine

I’m the last guy who ought to argue for the legalization of [any now illegal drug].1

As a practicing criminal defense attorney, I make a good income from defending people who are charged with drug crimes. If the drug war ended, I would lose a substantial portion of my income. Additionally, some would call me a health nut. I go to the gym six times a week and eat organic foods as often as possible. I wouldn’t change my healthy lifestyle if drugs were legal. I have three little kids. I don’t want them ever to become drug addicts. I want them to grow up in a safe world. Indeed, that’s exactly why I want the drug war to end.

When I was in law school, a wise law professor of mine taught me that if you are asking the wrong question, the answer doesn’t matter. In regards to MeTh, the question is not whether MeTh is dangerous and unhealthy. Over the years, I have represented countless MeTh users. I have seen the consequences of MeTh use up close. I am convinced MeTh use [can] ruin the user’s life. It is an extraordinarily dangerous [possibly sometimes too oft used] drug. Few drugs are more [habit-forming] or [sometimes] dangerous than MeTh.2

Legalize Methamphetamine

Many of those who oppose legalization of MeTh identify the horrors of MeTh use. I entirely agree with their assessment of MeTh’s dangers. Asking whether MeTh is dangerous or unhealthy or addictive is not the right question.

The relevant question is whether our society would be better served if MeTh was manufactured, distributed, bought and sold legally. The answer is yes.

There are two related but separate reasons why ending the drug war is critical.

  • First, a free society requires that the drug war end. I refer to this argument as the freedom argument.
  • * Second, the consequences of ending the drug war would yield economic and other benefits which would greatly benefit our society. I refer to this argument as the consequentialist argument.

Most readers will not be persuaded by the freedom argument. This fact is disturbing to me. In fact, many of the issues which plague our world will persist unless and until people come to respect the principles embodied in terms such as individual responsibility, self-ownership, and freedom. These concepts are what our country was founded upon and the very reason why America prospered. Now, they are given mere lip service if they are considered at all. If you shrug your shoulders and brush off the freedom argument, you should be ashamed of yourself. Whether you realize it or not, you are the problem.

Legalize Methamphetamine

THE FREEDOM ARGUMENT

I’m a good dad. I don’t want my kids using MeTh. Indeed, I will force my opinion about not using MeTh upon my kids. I will prevent them from using MeTh by force if necessary.3

As a dad, I have other policies as well. For example, my kids are not allowed to ride their motorized quads without helmets or to ride in the car without seatbelts. They are not allowed to smoke cigarettes or skydive either. However, at some point, my kids will be responsible to decide for themselves what activities are too dangerous for them. Both assessing the dangerousness of an activity and determining how much danger is acceptable will become the exclusive domain of each of my kids as it pertains to them. Resolving these questions for one’s self is an important task and responsibility of any free person.

The question of who gets to make decisions about the disposition of certain property is central to understanding freedom. Who gets to decide what activities are too dangerous for you? Should I get to decide what activities are too dangerous for you? What about your neighbor? Or the majority? Or the president? Or Congress? Or some judge? In a free society, the owner of the property gets to decide how the property is used.4

Because you own your body, I assert that you should decide how your body is used or abused.5

Legalize All Drugs And End the drug war

In terms of the freedom argument, the question of legalization of MeTh poses exactly the same question as many other issues currently confounding our fellow citizens. The following non-exhaustive list contains questions which are each different versions of the same question about how a particular body is used:

Should people be allowed to eat Big Macs?

Should people be allowed to consume any unhealthy foods at all?

Should people be allowed to play football despite the risk of serious injury?

Should people be allowed to skydive or rock climb?

Should people be allowed to ride in cars without seatbelts?

Should unprotected sex between consenting adult strangers be allowed?

Should consenting adults be allowed to have sex in exchange for money?

Should adults be permitted to ingest Marijuana for health reasons?

Should adults be permitted to ingest Marijuana for mere personal pleasure?

Should competent adults be allowed to voluntarily end their lives if they choose?

Each question begs the initial question about who gets to decide how a particular human body is used. Those of us who are pro-freedom would in each case conclude that the [Central Nervous SysTem or Nerve Mind] of the particular human body in question should decide how that body is used.6

The initial issue of who decides must be resolved first.

Although I would try my best to persuade others not to use MeTh, I concede it is not my decision. Among adults, persuasion is fine, but coercion is not. I will not force others to live by my assessments of dangers. I respect the property of other people such that I respect their right to use their property in ways I vigorously disagree with.7

I have no claim on how others use their property unless and until their activities trespass upon my property.8

Legalize Methamphetamine

The freedom argument is much bigger than the question of whether MeTh should be legal. It certainly resolves the question, but it raises larger questions about the very nature of government. Any legitimate role of government is confined to protecting rights. Indeed, unless you disagree with the principles upon which this country was founded and believe government is the source of rights which may be distributed to us or taken away, you must agree that government can have no rights other than the ones we individually delegate to it. Because you have no right to be my daddy, you have no such right to delegate to government. Further, because no person individually has any such right, even the majority of people added together collectively have no such right. Therefore, when the government acts as my daddy, it acts wrongfully; even if it acts pursuant to an accurately counted democratic vote.9

Although it is perfectly fine for me to act as a daddy to my kids, the government has no right to act as a daddy for us.

Some people posit that legalized MeTh would send the wrong message to people about using MeTh. However, the government’s role is not to send messages to us about what is right or wrong or good or bad. We don’t need messages from government. Free people determine for themselves how to run their lives. I have a right to be a self-destructive idiot if I choose. I [determine] me.

Additionally, the “messages from government” objection overlooks an important point. The concepts of legal and illegal are far different from the concepts of right and wrong or good and bad. Because an activity is legally permissible does not obligate people to conclude such an activity is right or good.10

Legalize Methamphetamine

Merely because the law allows my kids to insult other kids doesn’t prevent my wife and me from successfully teaching them not to do it. The unwillingness or inability of many people to invest the mental acuity to distinguish between these concepts has contributed to an intellectual feeblemindedness which is akin to a malignant tumor killing our society. The “messages from government” objection nourishes that tumor. We should embrace the concept that we are free to adopt personal standards of conduct which exceed the minimum threshold defined by law.

I regret devoting so few words to the freedom argument. It deserves much more. Many others have far more eloquently detailed the case for freedom. I hope to live to witness the day when the freedom argument is accorded the respect it deserves. I hope this skeletal argument stirs the interest of those who read it and encourages them to explore it more fully. The reason our society has been deteriorating in so many ways is because it has come to accord less and less respect to the freedoms of others. Winning the freedom argument is the only way to destroy the [legal cancers that infect] our world.

Legalize Methamphetamine

THE CONSEQUENTIALIST ARGUMENT

Some people say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results. They are right. The government has been recklessly ramping up the war on drugs for the past thirty-five years.11

Every year we get tougher laws and tougher sentences. Approximately 1.6 million people are needlessly arrested every year for non-violent drug offenses. Many more non-violent drug users are simply charged without arrest. Some of them are students who lose their student loans and can no longer afford college. Others are people who hold professional licenses and can no longer work in their professions. Lives are being needlessly ruined.

The growth of the prison industry has mushroomed. We now have private companies in the prison business.12

This is no surprise when you consider that the United States claims 4.6% of the world’s population but 22.5% of the world’s prison population. The DEA has grown from 2,775 employees in 1972 to almost 11,000 employees with 86 foreign offices in 62 countries in 2005. We have well over two million people in prison. Since 1980, America’s general population has increased 20%, while America’s prison population has increased at twenty times that rate or an astonishing 400%. America imprisons more people as a percentage of our population than any other country in the world.13

Legalize Methamphetamine

This is a sad state of affairs for any country; especially one which refers to itself as the land of the free.

Despite the explosive expansion of government to fight the war on drugs, drug use is more prevalent today than it was before the war on drugs started. Additionally, drugs are cheaper, more potent and easier to get than they were in the early years of the drug war.14

Throwing more money at the issue has not resulted in fewer people using drugs. Even the federal government admits drug use has increased recently from 6% in 1993 to over 8% in 2003.15

Despite the frantically increasing efforts to curb the flow of drugs, high school students report drugs are still easy to obtain. Almost 90% of twelfth graders report Marijuana is “very easy” or “fairly easy” to get. Over 47% of twelfth graders say cocaine is “very easy” or “fairly easy” to get and more than 32% say heroin is “very easy” or “fairly easy” to get.16

I have had clients tell me they became addicted to drugs when they were in prison. Even in a prison setting, drugs are prevalent.

Legalize Methamphetamine

Not only are [recreational] drugs readily available, some of them have become more dangerous as a result of the drug war. Looking specifically at MeTh, the drug war has resulted in exacerbating the dangers associated with amphetamine use. While attempting to put the hysteria currently surrounding MeTh use in perspective, a columnist named Jack Shafer who writes for Slate aptly stated the following:

In the mid-1960s, just before the government declared war on amphetamines, the average user swallowed his pills, which were of medicinal purity and potency. Snorting and smoking stimulants was almost unheard of, and very few users injected intravenously. Today, 40 years later, snorting, smoking [In reality Vaporizing and Toking], and injecting methamphetamines of unpredictable potency and dubious purity has become the norm—with all the dreadful health consequences. If the current scene illustrates how the government is winning the war on drugs, I’d hate to see what losing looks like. See, www.slate.com/id/2123838 August 3, 2005.

The United States now spends over fifty billion dollars every year to combat the war on drugs.17

The war on drugs has been a colossal and unparalleled failure.18

Despite my countless conversations with judges, prosecutors, police officers, DEA agents and drug dealers, it is extraordinarily rare for me to find anyone who thinks the drug war is working or will ever work under any circumstances. Indeed, despite my countless invitations, I have yet to find anyone willing to debate me publicly on the drug war. Imagine a fifty billion dollar annual program nobody seems willing to defend.

I understand why nobody wants to debate me on this issue. I believe the people who work in the justice system, and truly understand the problems associated with the drug war, know they would be debating the wrong side of the issue. I recently argued the case for MeTh legalization before a group of judges and prosecutors. I was disappointed during question time when, despite my provoking and challenging them, there was only one half-hearted attempt to engage me on the issues. The case for legalization is overwhelming.

I have had occasion to talk privately and confidentially with many drug dealers for well over a decade. I estimate I have represented hundreds of drug dealers. Although some have simply been users who sell to support their habit, others have been major players in big drug organizations. I have found many of them to be bright people who are well aware that an end to the drug war would immediately put an end to their businesses. They realize that they could not compete with large corporations in a legal market. Their ability to make money by manufacturing, distributing and selling drugs exists solely because of the drug war. They very much want the war on drugs to continue and even expand.

Legalize Methamphetamine

Many drug dealers understand that each large drug bust brings increased profits for them. Although a drug seizure is bad news for the particular drug dealer involved, it is wonderful news for all the other drug dealers in the market. When you see government agents celebrating a large drug seizure, imagine all the other drug dealers celebrating along with them.

The economics of drug sales are no different than any other product sold in the market. Every big drug seizure causes a temporary decrease in the supply of that drug in the relevant market. However, the drug seizure doesn’t affect the demand for the drugs. Drug users still want drugs despite some drug dealer being arrested.19

When the demand remains constant and the supply is decreased, prices go up. Imagine being a drug dealer with a big supply of drugs on hand when prices suddenly go up. It would be accurate to say that drug dealers gain the most, through increased profits, when government agents make a seizure. Increased profits also serve to entice people to embark on new careers as drug dealers. Drug dealers love the drug war and do not want it to end. If you support the drug war, you are on the side of, and act as an unpaid lobbyist for the plight of the drug dealer.

Some of the drug dealers I have met are actually very nice, non-violent people. I have represented drug dealers who do not use drugs at all. They were simply unable or unwilling to refuse an illegal opportunity to make a lot of money. However, some of the drug dealers I have met are not nice people. They sell their drugs with the help of violent street gangs. Some of these gang members intentionally market drugs to kids. Because gang members generally can not utilize the court system to settle disputes over drug sales, nor can they insure their merchandise against losses, violence and guns are necessarily involved.

Legalize Methamphetamine

Simply causing MeTh to be manufactured illegally is by itself a huge problem. As a result of illegal MeTh labs, toxic chemicals used to produce methamphetamine are often discarded in rivers, fields, and forests. The environmental damage which occurs results in ever-expanding cleanup costs. The massive growth in costs to clean up such environmental messes is also illustrative of the failure of current policy. The DEA’s annual cost for cleanup of clandestine MeTh laboratories in the United States has increased steadily from 2 million in 1995 to 23.8 million a mere seven years later in 2002.20

A huge collection of well-documented facts about the failure of the current drug policy can be found at www.drugwarfacts.org.

I have heard the saying that those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it. I suspect some criminal defense lawyer in the 1920’s incurred wrath from the establishment for writing an article advocating the legalization of alcohol. I would bet the nice attorney was attacked by small thinkers who repeatedly pointed out the harmful attributes of alcohol.21

In case you are unaware, the government decided in 1919 to amend the United States Constitution to grant power to Congress to prohibit the manufacture, sale and distribution of alcohol.22

Their drug war played out just like ours; a complete and total disaster. However, it was the best thing that ever happened to organized crime. The manufacture, sale and distribution of alcohol were conducted entirely in illegal and violent markets. Criminals prospered and criminal organizations grew. A major crime wave began in the 1920s and continually increased until the end of prohibition in 1933 when it immediately started to reverse.23

Legalize Methamphetamine

Prohibition did nothing to curb the desire of people to use alcohol. Indeed, both the per capita consumption of alcohol as well as the rate of alcoholism increased during prohibition.24 25

Illegal clandestine stills manufactured alcohol of inconsistent and unpredictable quality. Law enforcement was overwhelmed chasing after people involved in alcohol-related crimes. Does any of this seem familiar to you?

In 1933, they figured it out and repealed the eighteenth amendment.26

To be fair, we still have people with substantial alcohol abuse problems. It is a real problem. We have no shortage of alcohol-related crimes. However, violent criminal street gangs do not make money from the sale of alcohol. Although few people “homebrew” alcoholic beverages, people do not brew alcoholic beverages in clandestine labs. Nobody is offered large cash rewards to transport alcohol. The Budweiser guy doesn’t fight the Miller guy if they both happen to arrive at the store at the same time to deliver their drug. Alcohol companies settle disputes peacefully in court. Alcoholics can seek help without the fear of criminal prosecutions. More resources can be devoted to apprehending real thugs because our justice system is not overloaded with cases of people manufacturing, distributing or selling alcohol. Isn’t this obviously a better deal?

Legalize Methamphetamine

We know certain things for sure. If MeTh was no longer illegal:

1. All dangerous clandestine MeTh labs in residential neighborhoods would close;

2. All dangerous street gangs would be out of the MeTh business;

3. Every dime currently spent on MeTh prohibition could be spent on real crime;27

4. Meth addicts would have no legal disincentive to seek help;

5. The manufacture of MeTh would be safe and produce a consistent product [most likely with a higher percent of purity]; and

6. Toxic waste from MeTh production would be safely disposed of.

If you support maintaining the war on drugs, you must necessarily conclude that either I am wrong about the above six assertions or that the benefits of the drug war outweigh the obvious benefits contained in the six assertions. It is difficult for me to imagine one could rationally and honestly dispute any of the six assertions. They are obvious and virtually guaranteed to flow from legalization. Therefore, a drug war supporter is left with the argument that the drug war’s benefits outweigh the benefits contained in the six assertions. If this is your position, I challenge you to honestly reweigh the costs and benefits of each scenario. Unless you put your finger on the scale because you personally benefit from the drug war, you must conclude legalization wins.

Legalize Methamphetamine

I do not intend to claim that the above six assertions are the only benefits of legalization. I list them together because I find them to be indisputable. There are other benefits of legalization. I suspect many people would either not experiment with or stop using MeTh. Recently, a teenage MeTh user confirmed for me that she and her friends started using MeTh at least in part because it was illegal. I cannot recall any friends of mine who didn’t drink alcohol prior to reaching age twenty-one. Indeed, I consumed more alcohol prior to reaching age twenty-one than I do today or since I have been age twenty-one and one month.

In countries where the alcohol drinking age is sixteen, rates of alcohol-related problems appear to be lower than in the United States where the drinking age is twenty-one.28

The National Institute on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse reports that in 2003, 5.55% of Americans were either alcohol-abusing or alcohol dependent. The Austrian drinking age is sixteen and 2.2% are regarded as alcohol dependent.29

The German drinking age is sixteen and 3.9% of Germans’ alcohol use is considered harmful.30

Even during prohibition, while rates of death from alcoholism and cirrhosis were rising in the United States, they were decreasing during the same time period in Great Britain, Denmark and Ireland where alcohol use was legal.31

I recently traveled to Amsterdam where Marijuana use is legal for those over eighteen years of age. Marijuana use among minors in Amsterdam is decreasing. Indeed, the rate of Marijuana use by minors is five times less than what it is in the United States.32

Even among adults, the rate of Marijuana use in the United States is twice as high as in the Netherlands where use of Marijuana is legal.33

Legalize Methamphetamine

Many of the locals informed me that Marijuana use is simply not exciting and they virtually don’t ever use it unless people from out of town are visiting. As you may expect, I had a lot of questions for proprietors of Marijuana coffee shops. I personally witnessed a peaceful and safe Marijuana trade in Amsterdam. Although I wouldn’t want to live there for unrelated economic reasons, the Netherlands is a good example of why legalization makes sense.34

Tobacco is a far deadlier drug than is MeTh. For the year 2000, tobacco is blamed for causing 435,000 deaths.35

Deaths resulting from the direct or indirect use of all illegal drugs including MeTh, cocaine, OxyContin, heroin, and ecstasy for the same year total 17,000. id.36 37

Despite the fact that tobacco is legal, tobacco use is declining. In 1956, 42% of adults smoked. In 1980, only 33% of Americans smoked. Additionally, in 1977, 29% of high school seniors smoked. Four years later, the number of high school seniors who smoke had fallen to 20%.38

Education about the dangers of tobacco use can be credited for the decline of tobacco use which occurred while the drug was legally available and without any of the crime and violence associated with the drug war. The recent rise in popularity of non-alcoholic beer and low nicotine cigarettes can be attributed to the same phenomenon. The same beneficial effects could be applicable to MeTh and other illegal drugs.

Legalize Methamphetamine

Fortunately, people are slowly waking up to the fact that this war on drugs is the entirely wrong approach. I am encouraged by a courageous group of law enforcement and former law enforcement members who have joined together to form a group entitled Law Enforcement Against Prohibition or LEAP. A visit to their website at http://leap.cc/ is well worth the time invested. The over two thousand law enforcement members of LEAP state the following, “The membership of LEAP believe to save lives and lower the rates of disease, crime, and addiction, as well as to conserve tax dollars, we must end drug prohibition.” The members of LEAP are willing and eager to debate their views with anyone willing to try to defend the drug war. Also, judges are finally starting to speak out. See, http://www.judgesagainstthedrugwar.org which contains judicial opinions critical of the drug war.

Astute observers of the drug war might point out that the $50-$69 billion dollars currently being spent on the drug war annually could be used to more effectively address the problems associated with drug abuse. That money could go a long way to facilitate drug abuse education, treatment, and prevention.

Additionally, some may argue that legalization of drugs could be administered in much the same way alcohol is currently dealt with. Certainly, people who commit real crimes should be punished whether or not they were using drugs at the time. Legalization of drugs does not mean laws must permit unsafe drug-impaired drivers on the roads. Further, employers and other private citizens would be free to prohibit any and all drug use at their workplaces or on their property as they can now with alcohol. Indeed, what would change with a reasonable scheme of legalization would be a deletion of much of the crime and violence only; everything else would remain much the same or improve. It is a substantially better deal than the ongoing and worsening disaster we currently endure.

Legalize Methamphetamine

The drug war is un-American. One cannot simultaneously value freedom and yet support a governmental scheme which denies the individual his or her sovereignty over his or her own body. Indeed, control over one’s own body is the most fundamental of all rights. Worse, the drug war has effectively birthed countless violent criminal enterprises. This possibly well-intentioned effort has resulted in effectively creating our 51st state; the state of incarceration. The state’s population is growing out of control and it is choking the life out of the other 50 states. Thousands of peaceful Americans are currently living in cages because of the drug war. The drug war is lunacy and it must end [as soon as possible]. As it did for the revolutionaries who founded our country, the time has come for us to be bold and courageous. We must speak out against this horrendous mistake. We have the better case.

Marc J. Victor is a practicing criminal defense attorney located in Chandler, Arizona. He can be reached via his website at www.attorneysforfreedom.com

1 I support legalizing all drugs which are currently illegal.
2 Incidentally, many say tobacco is actually more addictive than MeTh. Isn’t it interesting that approximately 50% of tobacco users have quit using tobacco in the past ten years all during a time while the drug was completely legal.
3 My ex-wife is a good mom. She supports my ban on MeTh use for our kids.
4 I acknowledge this concept is extraordinarily radical and barely comprehensible to some. For a better understanding, find someone who refers to himself or herself as a “libertarian” and talk to that person.

5 If you assert no claim of ownership to your body, I may be interested in laying a claim. However, I would want to see you first.

EddiTr Reesponss Az A Claim Uhv ( Non { owneeng az my proprTee } This ByohLodjikuL Human Bod.

InSTed I Sher Thuh Following ThoTs:

A. I Don'T And|Ohr Woh'T Think That I Own Me Az "my self property"!!! I Don'T and Won'T Think ThaT ( I And|Ohr Mee And|Ohr Self) Could possibly own ( I And|Ohr Mee And|Ohr Self) az property. ( Wuch Wun Would Own The UhThr 2 ) Ohr ( Wich 2 would ownThuh UhThr Wun )??? I Am Mee. I Am Self. Self Iz Mee. LykWyz, WyL Uhwaeek, I Wer And Senss In This Human Bod PahrTs ThaT Non-Theengk Az (I=Mee=Self) { Sensseeng And { SumTymz Mooveeng Ohr SumTymz Feedeeng } } Theez Human Bod PahrTs Az AspecTs Uhv (I=Mee=Self).

B. This Human Bod { Experiences And Beehaeevz } Az An (I=Mee=Self) ThaT { IdenTifyz Az And Gahrdz } This Human Bod Az MeeSelfBod Wich Can { Senss Veeuh A Senss Prsepshuhn InTegraeeTeeng SisTem, { Theengk And Chooz } Veeuh A MohsTLee Nrv FiLd Brain Mynd } And { AkT Veeuh A MohTr SisTem} } ThaT Maeeks Kemz ( ThaT SignaL A PLan Tu Moov Sum PahrTs Uhv MeeSelfBod ) Then (MohTr Nrvz Sendz Thoz Moov PLan Kemz ( Down And OuT ) Tu Thuh Kohrespondeeng MuhsuLz Wich Then, Az KLohss Az PossibbuL, Moov Uhkohrdeeng Tu Thuh Moov Plan. WyL Uhwaeek (I=Mee=Self) Duz { Senss And Theenk And Moov } IdenTifying Az This Human Bod.

C. I Kuhnfess ThaT WyL This Human Bod SLeeps ( NonKonchuhsLee = Non-Experiencing A Dreem ), Ther Iz No Senss Uhv Ehnee ( I Nor Me Nor SeLf ) Thus No PossibbiLLiTTee Uhv { Theengkeeng Nor AkTeeng } Az An Ownr Uhv Even Wuhn Bod, Human Ohr Ehnee UhThr Kynd Uhv Bod. If This Human Bod SLeeps WyL Thuh Human Brain Maeeks Dreemz, Even Thoh A SimmeeooLaeeshuhn Bod MyT Bee Experienced WiTh PrimmiTTiv Senss Uhv Self, YeT Sinss (I=Mee=Self) Non-Can'T Senss This Biological Human Bod, Thus (I=Mee=Self) Can'T { ReeLisTikkLee Theenhk UhbowT Nohr In Ehnee Way AcT Az Owneeng Nohr Koz Tu AcT Nohr AkT Tu Gahrd } This Biological Human Bod; Thuh Brain Fungshuhnz Az A VrchoouL ReaLiTy SimeeooLaeeTr And A VrchoouL SelfBod Experience Maeekr.

6 In case you are confused, the correct answer to each question is yes.

7 Can you honestly say this? If not, you should think about what possibly justifies you in controlling another’s property. You should also not complain when others seek to control your property. It’s a freedom thing.

8 As a finer point, when their activities trespass upon my property, they are now using my property without my permission. Said more precisely, others are free to use their property in any way they please with no restrictions. A trespass is simply the acknowledgement they are wrongfully using another’s property.

9 Democracy and freedom are not the same concepts. Freedom is when the owner of the property decides how the property is used. Democracy is when a majority of non-owners decide how an owner must use his or her property. Democracy and freedom are often incompatible.

10 The opposite is also true for some acts which are currently illegal.

11 In 1969, Nixon spent $65 million on the drug war. In 1982, Reagan spent $1.65 billion on the drug war. Bush’s budget for 2006 requests $12.4 billion dollars which is a 2.2% increase over his 2005 budget.

12 I have nothing against private prisons. Indeed, the private sector should be administering prisons. My point here is simply to note that private entrepreneurs recognize the huge potential to prosper in this growth industry.

13 732 people out of every 100,000 live in government cages as of 2005.

14 These are facts asserted by current and former law enforcement officers. See www.leap.cc

15 Drug Use Trends and National Survey on Drug Use and Health, White House Office of Drug Control Policy (2004).

16 Monitoring the Future, National Results on Adolescent Drug Abuse, Overview of Key Findings 1999, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Page 48.

17 Some former police officers claim the current annual amount spent is sixty nine billion dollars per year. See, http://leap.cc

18 Some may say George W. Bush’s Iraqi policy is a failure of such magnitude that it rivals the drug war for the biggest failure attributable to a governmental effort. I admit it is a tough call.

19 Most drug addicts don’t watch the evening news or read the newspapers. They are not generally aware of drug busts or any other news for that matter

20 National Drug Threat Assessment 2004 (Johnstown, P.A.: National Drug Intelligence Center, April 2004), p. 18.

21 Yes, I am aware that alcohol abuse is harmful. My point here is that they were focusing on the wrong question.

22 It is worth noting that at least they acknowledged congress otherwise had no such power by amending the constitution rather than pretending the Commerce Clause includes such a power. I’m still searching for that amendment which grants power to Congress to run today’s drug war.

23 Pandiani, John A., The Crime Control Corps: An Invisible New Deal Program 348-358 (British Journal of Sociology, 33 September 1982).

24 Cases of alcoholism at New York’s hospitals increased over 100% during prohibition from 1919 to 1924. The National Prohibition Law: Hearing Before the Subcommittee of the Commission on the Judiciary, 69th Congress 148 (1926).

25 During prohibition from 1921 to 1929, per capita consumption of beer increased 463%, wine increased 100% and consumption of spirits increased 520%. Warburton, Clark, The Economic Results of Prohibition 174 (Columbia University Press, 1932).

26 At least their politicians had enough spine to admit their mistakes. With very few exceptions, today’s jellyfish politician is too worried about what the general public thinks to take a real leadership stand on this issue.

27 By “real crime” I mean when people trespass on the rights of others by force or fraud.

28 I realize such comparisons are difficult for a variety of reasons. However, the numbers are different enough that it appears a reasonably certain conclusion can be drawn.

29 Die Haufigkeit von Alkoholismus und Problemtrinken in Osterreich, Wiener Klinische Wochenschrift, 110 (10), 1998, pp. 356-363.

30 Reprasentativerhebung zum Gebrauch psychoaktiver Substanzen bei Erwachsenen in Deutschland, 2000 Sucht, Sonderheft 1, (2001).

31 Warburton, Clark, The Economic Results of Prohibition 78-90 (Columbia University Press, 1932).

32 Untitled editorial in The Lancet, Volume 346, Number 8985, (November 11, 1995) p. 1241. See also, Netherlands Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, Drug Policy in the Netherlands: Progress Report September 1997-September 1999, (The Hague: Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, November 1999), p. 7.

33 Netherlands Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, Drug Policy in the Netherlands: Progress Report September 1997-September 1999, (The Hague: Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, November 1999), pp. 7-8.

34 For more stats and documentation about how legal Marijuana has resulted in less Marijuana use as well as other overall societal benefits, see http://www.drugwarfacts.org/thenethe.htm

35 Journal of the American Medical Association, Jan. 19, 2005, Vol. 293, No. 3, p. 298.

36 This number includes deaths attributed to illegal drugs resulting from suicide, homicide, motor-vehicle injury, HIV infection, pneumonia, violence, mental illness, and hepatitis.

37 The number of confirmed deaths attributed solely to a Marijuana overdose in the history of the world is zero. See, Janet E. Joy, Stanley J. Watson, Jr., and John A. Benson, Jr., “Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base,” Division of Neuroscience and Behavioral Research, Institute of Medicine (Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1999), available on the web at http://www.nap.edu/html/marimed/; and US Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration, “In the Matter of Marijuana Rescheduling Petition” (Docket #86-22), September 6, 1988, p. 57.

38 Trebach, Arnold, Peace Without Surrender in the Perpetual Drug War, 136 Justice Quarterly 1 (1984).

Marc J. Victor is a practicing criminal defense attorney located in Chandler, Arizona. He can be reached via his website at https://www.attorneysforfreedom.com