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let's legalize drugs.

Discussion in 'U.S. Politics' started by all_arm, Jul 4, 2008.

  1. all_arm

    all_arm New Member

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    ok, totally seriously, i think we should legalize every illegal drug, and i would like to entertain opinions to the contrary that deal in concrete, rather than moralistic reasoning.

    from where i sit, it seems as though legalization would not only clear millions of nonviolent offenders out of our justice system, but also contribute to a massive decline in violent crime related to drugs (when was the last time you heard of a murder over cigarettes?)

    very few illegal drugs are more addictive or physically harmful than legal ones, and there are already laws relating to actions performed while intoxicated (i.e., driving)

    legalized drugs would provide a huge source of tax revenue.

    complications such as overdose and laced product would be alleviated to some degree because the contents and "serving size" could be regulated.


    so, WHY? apart from the nancy reagan "drugs are bad just say no" mentality, should drugs be illegal?
     
  2. SW85

    SW85 New Member

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    Because in a welfare state, tax dollars will inevitably be used to subsidize people's drug habits.

    Because legalized drugs would probably one day be coverable under anti-harrasment and anti-discrimination laws. (And, hell, let's face it, safe drug use would probably be taught in schools.)

    Because prohibition is the only thing propping up the social stigma attached to drug use, which, your whitewashing about the addictive properties of illicit drugs notwithstanding, really is a dangerous and destructive behavior.

    Because the whole of civilized society is predicated on the assumption that its people are not self-indulgent lotus-eaters.

    Are four reasons enough? Do I need to keep going?
     
  3. all_arm

    all_arm New Member

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    let's talk about addiction, then. there are two withdrawals that result in a significant number of deaths: alcohol and heroin. period. pretending, for a second, that those are the only two drugs relevant to this discussion, why is one legal and one not? either disallow both, or neither.

    the illegality of drugs is not stopping anyone. people who want to do crack and pcp and meth constantly are already doing them and they're already failing massively in life. meanwhile, there are millions of regular marijuana users who are contributing to society, who are successful and intelligent, and who have to look over their shoulders every second because of america's draconian drug laws.

    anti-discrimination laws do not apply to one's CHOSEN VICES, they never have and never should. total strawman. and besides, safe drug use SHOULD be taught in schools, just like safe sex, because the current system of blathering LIES at our children about the evils of sex and drugs isn't helping whatsoever. the current drug education curriculum is exactly the parallel of abstinence-only sex ed: it doesn't deal with the realities of drug use and addiction, and simply assumes that saying "it's bad" is disincentive enough... as a 21-year old college student with a 14-year old brother who DOES MORE DRUGS THAN I DO... i can assure you that what we're doing now isn't going to cut it forever.
     
  4. SW85

    SW85 New Member

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    And drug withdrawal is the only thing that kills drug users? Come on now.

    No, it's not stopping the small minority of people who are already doing drugs.

    Once again: the fact of its illegality is the only socially permissible way to be intolerant of drug use, which, in our let-it-all-hang-out society, is the only thing stopping it from becoming a widespread phenomenon, with all the attendant social and fiscal ills.

    Sure they have. Numerous deviant sexual behaviors, for instance.

    You are conceding the argument that legalizing drugs will result in their use becoming socially acceptable and, ultimately, subject to public funding.
     
  5. all_arm

    all_arm New Member

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    1. did i not mention overdose and contaminated product in my post? and the need for education about "safe" drug use? looks to me like i did. you can overdose on legal drugs, too, so the point remains: why are some ok, but others not?

    2. already doing? what about the millions of teenagers who are now at the age where they have to decide whether or not to start?

    kids can go down to the house on the corner and pick up some dxm or special k or whatever drugs they want, but it's a rare 13-year old who can walk into a gas station and purchase a six pack. it's easier to keep people who shouldn't be using a substance from using it, when all of society is involved in enforcement, rather than only police.

    3. "numerous deviant sexual behaviors." one, that's a moronic comment (personal attack removed, aren't you lucky?), and two, that's moralism. not what i asked for. homosexuality is, firstly, NOT A CHOICE, secondly, NOT DEVIANT, and thirdly, TOTALLY IRRELEVANT.

    4. the use of illegal drugs will no more be "subject to public funding" than alcohol or tobacco. do you advocate their criminalization? if you do, then you have a valid point (based on your own ideology), but i somehow doubt that's the case.




    one last thing: small minority of drug users? how old are you, and where do you live? 20 million americans are regular marijuana users, and 50 million more have used it in their life. that's at least 25% or so, and with every successive generation it's getting higher.

    based on a totally informal survey, i would guess that out of the 50,000 undergrad students at my university, 60% have at least tried pot, and probably 35-40% are at least semi-regular users. within 50 years, there will probably NEVER be another presidential candidate who did not use drugs at least semi-regularly at some point in their life. imo, opposition to drug law reform is the paramount of regressive thinking.
     
  6. SW85

    SW85 New Member

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    Because the deleterious social consequences of smoking tobacco do not compare to those of crystal meth use? :rolleyes:

    What about them?

    Oh, get over yourself. I bring it up because you are very clearly unable to learn the historical lessons that have resulted from liberalizing sexual mores.

    All behaviors are rooted in choice. And why spring to homosexuality? I was thinking specifically of transsexualism, which in some areas is already protected under anti-discrimination laws to frequently absurd extents (and is similarly sometimes subject to public funding).

    They are, by definition, deviant, i.e., diverging from established societal norms. :rolleyes:

    This is a poor example. Both are subject to huge volumes of public subsidies, both directly (for instance, US subsidies to tobacco producers or EU subsidies to alcohol) and indirectly (government-funded care for those who have squandered their health drinking and smoking).

    And even barring those things -- yes, society will pay for them. When you are rendered unemployable by meth, you will be voting government handouts into your pocket. Can the government turn down a man's welfare application because he's ruined his life using a drug the government allows him to use? This is precisely why I said above that civilized society is predicated on the assumption of virtue on the part of the people.

    I've heard this a million times.

    Policy in a democratic society is not based on ideological consistency. It is based on the collective will of the people, who weigh the costs and benefits of individual policies and choose what they believe to be the most favorable ones.

    Pfffth. Legalize marijuana for all I care. It is comparatively harmless to the vast majority of illicit drugs you would legalize in the name of 'ideological consistency.'
     
  7. all_arm

    all_arm New Member

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    tobacco use contributes to millions of deaths annually and god knows how many lost work-hours. yes, meth is an awful drug, and even if it were legal, i doubt much of anyone would care to sell it. but why lock people up for something they choose to do that doesn't hurt anyone else?

    you said that laws deter everyone expect the people who already do drugs, which i explained was not true, because of the innumerable people who are everyday CHOOSING to START doing drugs, regardless of the laws.


    transsexualism is exactly the same as homosexuality. while there may be a small percentage of individuals who choose to gravitate towards that behavior, mostly it is a result of a feeling they have always had.

    and "all behaviors are rooted in choice?" blinking, breathing, the evolutionary imperative to procreate? lots of behaviors... maybe most, are actually programmed into us. in some people, (homosexuals and transsexuals, for our purposes) certain aspects of "normal" programmed behavior are "abnormal," the biological reason for which we don't yet understand.

    deviant implies "wrong," not simply different, and you know it.

    yes, it can turn him down. welfare, unemployment, etc. etc., are all distributed predicated on certain conditions which one has to pass to collect aid. you've gone completely outside the issue at hand, and put words into my mouth, to try to counter my point. no one should be given aid unless they are attempting to contribute to society, or rendered unable to contribute based on a non-chosen condition.


    i never said that's how policy was made. the policy discussion is separate. YOU made a claim as to why illegal drugs should stay illegal, in YOUR opinion, and i pointed out the inconsistency in YOUR opinion, which you have yet to reconcile.

    well, that's a start, but it doesn't really address everything i said. you've simply hung yourself up on this consistency argument.

    drugs should be legal because law enforcement has shown that it is not an especially effective tool in dealing with abuse and addiction. a better course would be to legalize all of them (since, how does one rightly determine the line at which one says, "you may not do this ---->") and then tailor our laws and policies to that new reality, rather than continue to cling to a broken system because we're afraid of what might happen if we do it differently.
     
  8. The Scotsman

    The Scotsman Well-Known Member

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    .....indeed, the industrialisation of drugs would be an interesting opportunity for corporate America. Are you proposing that the Government maintains an oversight over the supply of drugs, for example licensed manufacturers or import/export restrictions and tariffs or quality control - would their be FDA approved drugs for example?

    I guess the starting point is sales. Would companies or retailers have to be licensed to deal in drugs or are you proposing a free unregulated market?

    Would there be import restrictions on Opium and Opiate Derivatives from overseas for example - the point being that the main opium supplier at the moment is the Taliban in Afghanistan! I'm assuming that you would only want US homegrown poppies. Also Cocaine, the largest producer is Colombia thus they would have an economic advantage over American companies as they already have supply and distrubtion chains in place. Would you propose tax incentives for American companies whilst the imbalance is rectified?

    Would you licence companies like Monsanto to genetically modify poppies so that their strength and potency is enhanced? that would open up the market to the possibility of luxury and premium brands that cost more thus optimising tax revenues. I'm assuming that in a competitive market the idea is to have brand loyalty thus the modification to the chemical constituents in order to maximise the addictive qualities should be researched in order to capture the consumer and keep him loyal!

    Would you propose any advertising restrictions?

    Its a great idea as you could raise hugh quantities of tax revenue from not only the direct sales but anciliary industries as well.
     
  9. Andy

    Andy Well-Known Member

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    Yeah and we've seen the effectiveness of sex education (not), and nor would we see effective drug education. "Just say no", worked. Drug use during that campaign dropped. As soon as "I didn't inhale" got in office, drug use went up.

    I'm not sure what "lies" you are referring to, but educating a druggie and a promiscuous teens, just results in educated druggie deviants. I vote we just say no, and teach that sex is for marriage.
     
  10. poptart

    poptart New Member

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    To legalize drugs would destroy the multi billion dollar industry of fighting the drug war. 80% of all crime is drug related, so what do we do with all the unemployed lawyers. And since lawyers run everything, you can bet they will never do anything to get THERE ranks to the unemployed.

    So to the OP, since when has common sense had anything to do with the courts or criminal law in America.
     
  11. GODSPEED

    GODSPEED New Member

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    one first thought I had...if drugs are legalized, and for more readily available...wouldn't you think more children would start doing them? Say right now...(im gonna make up numbers here) that 8% of parents have illegal drugs in their home..so we change the laws...legalize all drugs...crack, cocaine, heroin...and the number rises to 60% of parents have drugs in the home. The amount of children that are going to use is gonna increase like crazy....meaning kids will not do as well in school...or maybe not even go to school. Legalizing all drugs is a sure fire way to make sure our future in this country is wrecked. On another note...it's clearly proven that drugs are addictive..especially hardcore drugs...so..even if legalized..they still cost money..which means as more people become addicted, they are more likely to steal either from work, or normal citizens, to get money to buy drugs to get their fix. I could keep going and get alot more in depth, but you get the point..unless your high right now.
     
  12. Federal Farmer

    Federal Farmer New Member

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    I'm rather torn on the subject. While I personally oppose anyone using any illegal drugs (to include nicotine and alcohol by those under aged persons), and while there is no doubt that the government does have the Constitutional authority to regulate any and all drugs, I do think that some of the challenges with drugs could be alleviated by legalizing, and strictly regulating and controlling them.

    If drugs are legalized, and strictly regulated and controlled, not unlike certain OTC medications are today, it could very well cut down on usage, especially among the young. Take for instance the recent control of pseudoephedrine, where it's kept behind the counter at the drug store, one must present valid ID and sign for it at the time of purchase, and computerized records are kept of each purchase to prevent going from one pharmacy to another to another.

    Also, be legalizing, regulating, and controlling them, it would virtually eliminate the "underground economy" of drug dealing, which in turn would help eliminate the vast amounts of crime surrounding the drug trade. Farmers could be licensed to grow whatever the components of the drugs are, they could be tested by the FDA, packaged and sold much like alcohol and tobacco are today, and have heavy "sin" taxes imposed upon them.

    This way an adult could go in and purchase their DOC knowing that it is pharmacologically pure, and the amount one can purchase is limited in order to help avoid addiction.

    Of course, strict enforcement would have to be implemented very much like DUI is today, and the equipment would need to be developed for LEO's to be able to immediately ascertain if someone is operating a motor vehicle while under the influence (portable blood testing equipment for instance), and anyone caught DUI would have to be arrested and charged if they were over whatever the "legal limit" is determined to be for whatever drug(s) they're on.
     
  13. SW85

    SW85 New Member

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    Precisely because, in a democratic society, your actions do affect others -- and they have no freedom to avoid the consequences of your actions. This is doubly true since we live in a virtueless welfare state where taxpayers will invariable end up subsidizing someone's behaviors no matter how destructive or ill-advised.

    I did not say they were deterring everyone except drug users from doing drugs. (As you say, plenty of people wouldn't do drugs even if they weren't legal, which suggests there are other motivators involved). You're assuming this is the logical opposite of what I said -- that drug laws are not deterring current drug users -- and it's not.

    So?

    You may have a biological drive to have sex with other men, but it is still your choice to have sex with other men.

    If deviant = wrong, I wouldn't have to say it's wrong because it's deviant, now would I?

     
  14. XCALIDEM

    XCALIDEM Active Member

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    you must be an Obama supporter. He wanted to legalized weed also.:mad:

    check out this video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQr9ezr8UeA
     
  15. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    Not to mention the prison industry. We just might be able to balance some of the state and local budgets if we didn't have 1% of the adult population in prison for one thing or another, a huge percentage of them as a result of drug addiction.

    Very seldom, and the drug laws are a prime example:

    The drug that causes more death and human misery than any other is legal.

    Alcohol is legal, but pot is not. The reason is, of course, tradition, the same reason that tobacco is legal and other drugs are not. Why is it legal to smoke the drug that kills you slowly, but not legal to smoke the one that makes you silly and gives you the munchies? Tradition, of course.

    What we don't seem to realize is that making something illegal just because it is a bad idea doesn't keep people from doing it.

    Doing drugs is a bad idea, no question about it. Making drugs illegal hasn't kept people from using them, though, has it? All it has done is to spawn a whole underground network of dealers, smugglers, and gangs, a whole lot like that other social experiment in prohibition back in the '30s.

    Still, there is a large enough segment of the population who believes in using the force of government to impose their values on the rest of society that it will probably not be possible to have a rational drug policy any time in the foreseeable future.
     
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