Heartening news

Our president-elect, Enrique Peña Nieto, for whom I voted, says maybe it’s time to legalize drugs.

He says he’s not personally in favor of legalization (covering his political butt) but that it’s time to have a national debate.

Legalization is, of course, the sole solution to the narco violence that only grows worse every year. There is no other route to peace. None, zip, zero.

Recently, the president of Uruguay said it is time to legalize marijuana. And the leaders of Guatemala, Colombia, Costa Rica and Brazil are saying the same thing.

First marijuana, then all drugs for adults, I say.

But you say you don’t want to make it any easier for young people to get drugs. Any 12-year-old with an IQ of 85 can get drugs today. It can’t be any easier.

America’s 40-year War on Drugs has done nothing useful at all. It’s Prohibition II. America’s 13-year War on Booze, the first Prohibition, also failed miserably.

Both Prohibitions were born in America, a sanctimonious nation.

Outlawing anything that feels really, really good will always fail. Criminalizing booze and drugs is like forbidding sex. It’s patently silly to even try.

Let’s toast the Latin American leaders who are seeing the light. And join me in contributing to LEAP while you’re at it.

29 thoughts on “Heartening news”

  1. Agree 100%. Addiction is a medical issue that may/may not result in criminal actions, like alcohol. If usage of any drug is responsible, personal choices should not be legislated. Same goes for prostitution.

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    1. Ms. de Bois: What many don’t realize is that quite a few illegal drugs are not even addictive, especially the hallucinogens like LSD, psilocybin, peyote, etc. Not even ecstasy is addictive.

      Two wildly popular drugs that are very addictive are tobacco and coffee. Not illegal, however, because lawmakers and most of their constituents are addicted to them. Chocolate is a drug too.

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  2. Now, if we could easily redirect the “follow the money” aspect, and see why it will be such an uphill battle, only time will tell.

    Several European countries also like Spain has already legalized it with positive results.

    Maybe the US will have some brave politico suggest a hefty tax, “to solve the financial woes” which may garner some support.

    Only negative I can see is that it will create a new department of govmint to regulate it , growing Washington larger.

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  3. For many years I was not in favor of legalizing drugs. I have changed my mind. We have so many laws and regulations that we have become a nation of criminals. However, I do believe in personal responsibility. Don’t expect the taxpayer to pay for your rehabilitation or any other problem you have gotten into because of poor decisions.

    Just took the quiz from an early post.
    96% Ron Paul
    88% Gary Johnson
    86% Romney
    30% Obama (that’s disappointing, should be much lower)

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    1. Jackie: The minority of drug users who get into trouble with it need medical help just as the minority of drinkers who are alcoholics need medical attention. Most people who use drugs handle it perfectly well as do most people who tipple.

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  4. Enrique Peña Nieto? Mi Amigo, I thought you were a PAN man! In fact you stated so in black and white right on this Blog! Not a bad thing though, It means you will likely come to your senses before November and vote for Obama.

    On the drug front, we are of like minds. Full legalization is the only solution! Of course to put a complete end to the problem that legalization must include the United states, something that no party is advocating. Sad.

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    1. Croft: Yep, in the last moment I voted for Peña Nieto. I did it solely to give him a little leg up over his lefty demagogue opponent who was in the No. 2 spot. The PAN candidate, totally wooden, didn’t have a chance anyway, not that I was all too keen on her anyway. She was a bad choice for candidate. As for my voting for Obama in November, there is less than zero chance of that.

      Yep, it’s most important that the U.S. legalize drugs, and it will in time. But getting it going in Latin America first is a great thing. Catholics are not sanctimonious.

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  5. I just took the quiz and it seems I am not an Obama man after all! I side with:

    Jill Stein 95%
    Obama 93%
    Stewart Alexander 85%
    Ron Paul 46%
    Willard Romney 5%

    I guess we are both Tree Huggers!

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    1. Croft: I took the test a second time due to overlooking some questions on the first go as I mentioned in the Update at the bottom of the post. Turns out I did not rate so highly as a tree-hugger after all, though I have no objection to hugging trees.

      Jill Stein? Stewart Alexander? What have they to do with anything?

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  6. Felipe, for a raging right winger you surprise me! Legalizing drugs?!?

    I support this as well, there is much less harm in a little marijuana than there is in booze or many prescription drugs. We have a seriously ill family member with a chronic condition and he has a medical marijuana prescription, lives in British Columbia which has some of the best weed around and refuses to fill the prescription. Some sort of misguided belief about it being wrong. I don’t know how being covered in Fentanyl patches is supposed to be better, but he’s the one that is living in pain everyday. He should just have some special brownies and get over it…..

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    1. Joanne: I am a moderate, a middle-of-the-road kind of feller. I get there in the middle by way of averages. I am a right-wing nutcase on some issues, and I swing waaay to the left on others. You average it out, and it makes me oddly moderate. In short, my stances, both left and right, are intelligent and sensible. Always.

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    2. By the way, criminalizing drugs and criminalizing abortions go down the same road to more problems. Drug use and abortions are gonna happen. It’s best to keep them out of the criminal world.

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  7. Without the U.S.’s buy-in, I rather doubt (sadly) that legalizing drugs (except for very small quantities) will go very far in Mexico. Didn’t Calderón go down this road to no avail? I think the State Department would throw a fit if the Mexicans said, “Hey, feel free to ship as much as you want to the border. After that it’s not our problem.”

    As far as legalizing recreational drugs in the USA, I think there’s not a shadow of a doubt that we should legalize marijuana. It’s safe, non-addictive and way less harmful than the legal substances tobacco and alcohol. How many lives has marijuana ruined? How many lives has alcohol ruined? I think the latter has done WAY more damage, especially to sensitive groups like American Indians.

    It also seems that legal marijuana would avert tragedies such as those occasioned by products like these so-called “bath salts.” These are unregulated chemicals that can be extremely harmful and are sold as a marijuana substitute. NPR did a story on them last week, and after going through all the dangers of such substances, did not even ask the obvious question of why marijuana is illegal but these substances are legal.

    Further, it came out in the news today that abuse of prescription drugs is a much bigger problem than use of recreational drugs. To your point, it’s impossible to stop people getting high. Best approach is education and treatment.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Boston, MA
    Where occasionally we come across folks smoking pot in the subway. Whatever!

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    1. Kim: I don’t recall Calderón advocating drug legalization. He did bring out the military, however. Yes, the U.S. would throw a fit if Mexico legalized drugs. Uruguay is coming up against quite a bit of fit-throwing from other nations and international organizations too over its decision to legalize pot.

      Yes, the best approach is education and, for the minority of users who have problems, medical treatment.

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  8. Imagine the benefits. A significant reduction in crime and a significant increase in tax dollars that could be used for any number of societal benefits. I could not agree more. Alas, I suspect that any number of decision makers have less than honorable reasons to maintain the status quo.

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  9. The largest impediment to legalizing drugs, any kind, in the US is the Partnership for a Drug Free America. It is totally funded by the big pharma industry and works to sway straying (if there are any) politicians.

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  10. Agree with legalizing drugs.

    I also appreciate and agree with the comments relative to abortions and the Cuba embargo.

    While I came up a Dem/Obama supporter (75%) in the quiz – it appears we agree on these “liberal” issues …

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    1. Mommy: Yeah, I inhabit the Lefty halls on some important points. I favor strict gun control too. Neither end of the political spectrum has all the right ideas.

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  11. One thing missing from this discussion of legalization (post and comments). Do y’all actually believe that the cartels are going to “go quietly into that good night?” This is a multi-billion dollar industry.

    If you think heads are rolling now in this so-called “war”…

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    1. Ray: When Prohibition I ended in the early 1930s, the violence associated with it did indeed end almost overnight. That is not to say that the criminals involved did not continue being criminals. They simply moved, one assumes, on to other sorts of, less focused, criminal activity.

      Protection, hookers, bank robberies, etc.

      However, the Valentine’s Day Massacres, the machine-gunning of Italian spaghetti joints, all the specific and extreme violence that was connected to the Bootleg Era, came to a screeching halt. The massive money-maker was booze, not those other activities.

      And the same will happen when this Prohibition Two is repealed.

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      1. I hope you are right. But this is not the 1930’s, and we are not talking about whiskey stills, bathtub gin, and Tommy guns. These folks are better-organized, better-armed, and have a bigger budget than a lot of countries.

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