General discussion



By Ciderick ·
Just been having an interesting conversation with some fellow workers regarding drugs & legalisation. Many different viewpoints developed such as: -

1) Legalise none of it
2) Legalise soft drugs (hash & the like)
3) Legalise all of them & let the money raised help those people who become addicted (believe it or not, it was a very strong argument - I just don't have time to write the whole thing).
4) Make beer & ciggies illegal (!!!!)

I think the american law is too harsh on the softer drugs & use all the old proven wrong arguments like 'gateway' drugs - If you tell people that hashish will kill you & then they find out you lied about that, they are more likely to take harder drugs therefore, misinformation is more of a gateway than soft drugs. Also, if soft drugs were legal, you wouldn't need to go see Shifty McDealer to get them & would not be introduced to his other wares.

Just interested to see what you guys & gals think.

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I have strong views on this matter

by jardinier In reply to Drugs

I think it has been demonstrated that prolonged use of marijuana can cause brain damage. I know of at least two friends whose mental capacity was noticeably impaired after prolonged, regular use.

Alcohol has, and always will be far more damaging to society that marijuana could ever hope to be. Alcohol causes violence, including and especially wife beating, fatal road accidents, absenteeism, huge medical costs and of course eventually destroys your liver.

Tobacco smoking is a primary cause of lung cancer, and of course emphysema.

The treatments for these diseases impose a considerable burden on the public purse.

Heroin does not in itself cause any physical damage. The other powder-like substances which are mixed with it for the purpose of profit can do seriously harm to the body.

Heroin, crack and other strong drugs are one of the major causes of violent crime and theft. Because they are illegal, the street price is grossly exaggerated and the quest for money to pay for these habits leads to robbery which in America especially is often accompanied by violence or murder because of the widespread acceptance of hand guns.

A former neighbour of mine who was a top medico told me that the actual cost of heroin was 40 cents a hit. It was the illegality which increased the price.

A particular clergyman in Sydney, The Rev Bill Crewes who was formerly director of the Crisis Centre at the Wayside Chapel, strongly advocates legalisation of heroin as the lessor of two evils as he has had so much personal contact with people who are addicted.

Cigarettes are highly taxed in Australia so that the high cost is possibly a partial deterrent from smoking.

The root evil of the problem as I see it is that the tobacco and alcohol industries are so huge that they have great lobbying power to influence and probably bribe politicians.

Crack, ecstasy and others seems to fall into a different category socially than heroin so these may need to be addressed differently.

So what would I recommend? Option 3.

Legalise all of them & let the money raised help those people who become addicted.

I think cigarettes and other tobacco products should carry a massive tax, which as with option (3) should go to help defray medical costs of people who develop serious illnesses because of use of these products.

I don't know what the situation is in the USA and Canada, but in Australia it has been many years now since advertisements for tobacco products have been totally banned, and I don't recall seeing any ads for alcohol in recent years. Tobacco and alcohol companies who sponsor sporting events are no longer permitted to display their banners at these events.

I am surprised and disappointed that this very important discussion has been overlooked. Perhaps my post will take it to the top of the list again by date, and others will join in.

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