Thursday, November 12, 2009

Drug Legalization

There is a cry out for legalizing drugs from both liberals and conservatives. Most are torn between two options: legalizing/decriminalizing drugs, or escalating the war on drugs. There have already been efforts made by President Nixon and President Reagan that led to overcrowded prisons, racial disparity, and an increase of drug related crimes. So the real question is, since we've already tried, if we legalize drugs will it help out any, or will it just turn for the worst?

It's thought that if government legalizes drugs then all violence ties with drugs will disappear. The illegalization, of drugs, creates violence because their markets are driven underground. It leads to violence because buyers and sellers can not resolve disputes in courts, so they deal with arguments violently. Violence is the norm when dealing with drug situations. It was just as common when alcohol was prohibited, but violence ceased when legalized. Is it possible if drugs are legalized, then the violence tied in would end? People will say that drug users generally aren't violent. Most simply want to be left alone to enjoy their high.

"Drugs are not good or bad. Drugs are drugs, which humans have used to help or hurt themselves and others forever. At some point, government cannot afford to be a "super-parent" and instead should treat its citizens like adults who must make their own life choices and live with the consequences." (Hamilton) That statement is true. It is a person's choice to take drugs, but when they start to harm someone else under the influence of drugs, than it becomes a problem. Government believes if they legalize drugs, it will stop violence. It might stop some of the violence between the drug war, but what about the violence that goes on when the person is intoxicated? In the United States there are 20,308 deaths a year caused by people under the influence of drugs. Therefore it's quite simple, drugs cause violence. The people who commit crimes aren't necessarily committing a crime to get illegal drugs, but the drugs caused a violent behavior. Just think if drugs were legalized, more people could be on them, and more people could potentially be hurt.

Some people think that making drugs legal would make government back off of the subject. But really it seems it would make them press harder. If drugs were legalized, government would just have to make a new law for minors, just like they did for tobacco and alcohol. Because if cigarettes and alcohol cannot be sold to minors, there will have to be restrictions put on drugs also. In addition to the new laws, there would be numerous lawsuits. You can recall all the lawsuits that were brought to the tobacco companies, think of all the ones that would affect the new drug companies, if legalized. So it seems if drugs were legalized, government would play a bigger role than before.

Prohibiting drugs has been draining out people's wallets. State and local governments spend roughly $44 billion per year to enforce drug prohibition. The same governments, if legalized, would collect $33 billion per year just from tax revenue on legalized drugs.

I do believe permitting some drugs for medical reasons would be just, because there are drugs that would serve as a more adequate pain killer than others could. Terminally ill patients such as cancer and glaucoma don't always have strong enough pain killers. Since there is evidence of how effective it is, maybe the legalization of those drugs should be considered, but other than that I personally don't support the legalization of drugs.

I don't believe all drugs should be legalized, because as you all know drugs are not the safest. I think legalizing drugs would only stop violence to an extent. It may stop the violence in drug distribution, but I don't think it would stop the violence that goes on when a person is intoxicated. People could regulate that, but to what extent?

Mr. A-Z

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