Skip to comments.Stumbling Down the Slippery Slope: First Legalized Weed Then Prescription Smack?
Posted on 02/15/2010 2:12:42 PM PST by Michael van der Galien
In December I had a great discussion with my friend Mary Grabar about marijuana legalization, the role of government, and the counterculture. The debate, collected and republished at FrontPage, can be read here and here.
One of NRBs friends, Donald Douglas who blogs at American Power, took note of the debate at the time and cautiously took Marys side. Now Donald was kind enough to alert me to a post hes written today about heroin dealers in California.
Donalds point: if marijuana legalization is allowed (and it practically is in California all you need is a doctors note) then heroin legalization will follow.
Donald doesnt really support this argument very well; its more a hunch or a fear of his than something he can credibly defend. (Slippy slopes tend to be this way.) But this is blogging, not an academic thesis, so Im not going to hold that against him too much.
But, heres an answer to the idea of across-the-board decriminalization: So what if heroin, crack, LSD, crystal meth, and every life-destroying addictive chemical under the sun were legalized and regulated ala alcohol and tobacco?
Conservatives who argue that we need to continue spending billions of dollars every year in the fight against human nature are forgetting a simple point that theyre always so good at pointing out when leftists trot out their socialist entitlement schemes: when the government forces its way into the picture to try and fix a problem chances are the end result will be the creation of three new, worse problems. Government just is very ineffective at actually solving problems. It is the problem as some guy once said.
(Excerpt) Read more at newsrealblog.com ...
We all may need it before this “Bad Trip” ends.
In a perfect world people should be free to take it or leave it.
I believe that if everything were legalized, the unintended consequences could be horrific.
What about all the second and THIRD hand smoke?/
There would also be a lot of self cleaning of the gene pool.
I don’t think you’d have the same negative consequences in terms of second and third hand smoke as tobacco. There has not been a single instance of cancer attributed soley to marijuana use, in addition to this, the vast majority of medical users vaporize their medicine so as to not inhale any tars or resins.
The Tyra Banks Show is defending potheads right now.
The one thing I never see mentioned in these posts concerning legalization of mind-altering and addictive narcotics: ‘legalization’ confers on these products a tacit public approval of their use.
Let me give you an example of what that might entail. When I lived in Spain the personal possession of marijuana and hashish was decriminalized (1982).
The result was a crime wave. Children as young as 7 and 8 years old were breaking into vehicles and residences to steal cash and/or property to fence - all in an effort to get money to purchase pot and hash. There was even one case I personally knew of where a gang of children beat a man to the ground and stole his wallet. Of course the law stated only adults were to possess and use said drugs, but the reality was considerably different than the original intent.
I cannot imagine the U.S. population legalizing heroin. The misery that would cause - and it doesn’t just affect the individual addict but their whole family - would be unfathomable. This will only result in tragedy.
Why were they not already doing the same thing to purchase wine and liquor?
Don’t know, but I never saw drunk children. Smoking tobacco was very prevalent in Spain then and most men, I noticed, smoke tobacco. So it was probably due to the acceptability of smoking.
I know from my own family that children generally like sweet drinks. Alchohol products in Europe, generally available as wine and beer, are not sweet unless sugar and/or fruit is added. The wine in Spain is generally quite dry and fruit syrup is added to make it palatable. The only drunks I saw were adults, and they were very few in number.
Marijuana and hash, and I’m no expert on this, are generally not available as a sweet drink.
Actually there have been studies showing a link to lung cancer in MJ smokers. Maybe because inhaling ANY kind of smoke into your lungs over a long time just isn’t good for you. Heck, leftists want to ban fireplaces because of the smoke.
“The result was a crime wave. Children as young as 7 and 8 years old were breaking into vehicles and residences to steal cash and/or property to fence - all in an effort to get money to purchase pot and hash. There was even one case I personally knew of where a gang of children beat a man to the ground and stole his wallet. Of course the law stated only adults were to possess and use said drugs, but the reality was considerably different than the original intent.”
That sounds really doubtful to me. After all, alcohol is illegal, but where are the gangs of minors going around stealing and robbing people to acquire money to buy alcohol? Oh, that’s right, they can’t buy it because they’re under age. In fact, illegal pot, even though it’s more expensive due to its illegality, is more available to teens than alcohol is. And still no wave of theft by children to buy it.
IMHO, fully legalizing pot would probably result in higher rates of usage, but would reduce the flow of money to the organzied criminals who produce and, more importantly, traffick it. Whether that trade-off is worthwhile is debatable.
Legalization of, even by prescription, say heroin, would presumably greatly reduce the amount of street crime done by junkies to purchase what is really a fairly cheap narcotic to produce, but is very expensive on the street. The legalization of (more) highly addictive mind altering substances, and the subsequent likely increase in use, is highly unpalatable politically and morally, however, regardless of whatever harm reduction arguments might be made in its favor. I can’t see it happening any time soon, but it has been tried in some places (in the U.K., for example). Not sure how that all worked out.
“Why were they not already doing the same thing to purchase wine and liquor?”
Or the readily available illegal hash and marijuana?
“Actually there have been studies showing a link to lung cancer in MJ smokers”
I’m not sure about the lung cancer, but I have seen it associated with some other breathing problems. Not surprising, especially considering how often marijuana is contaminated with things like mold spores. Chronic use of marijuana has also been associated with cardiac problems - again not surprising considering that smoking MJ causes a serious increase in heart rate.
I still favor legalization, but only if the real risks involved with its use are made known, as they are with tobacco or alcohol.
So the children didn’t drink wine and beer because they aren’t sweet, even though drinking was totally acceptable, but they couldn’t get enough of smoking hash (not exactly a taste treat), because smoking was totally acceptable.
I remain skeptical of your analysis.
The War on Drugs is a jobs program, not a serious effort to reduce drug use. The problem is the collateral damage, productive citizens being prosecuted for small amounts of pot.
Many medical professionals say only a small percentage of any population wants to hurt itself through drug or alcohol abuse. So it’s unlikely that a well planned program will increase narcotics abuse. Most of us have no interest.
Turn marijuana into a low-cost, taxed option that produces revenue instead of a huge expense to the taxpayers.
Create drug-dispensing clinics where narcotics users can get free narcotics, clean needles, and health counseling.
Then dramatically increase drug-pushing penalties to eliminate competition.
Result: Crime drops and we save on law-enforcement costs.
Which reminds me--didn't you ever run into Licor 43 or Crema Catalana? One tastes like vanilla, the other tastes like creme brulee--kids would love either one.
>Heck, leftists want to ban fireplaces because of the smoke.<
I guess since they want to legalize pot, we can assume marijuana smoke is harmless./
>Legalization of, even by prescription, say heroin, would presumably greatly reduce the amount of street crime done by junkies to purchase what is really a fairly cheap narcotic to produce, but is very expensive on the street.<
By the time big pharma gets done with it, it will likely be more expensive than the illegal stuff!
Is it illogical to believe parents want to protect their children from using tobacco, alchohol and narcotics?
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